Research Findings: Supporting the social and emotional well-being of early childhood professionals is of great importance for the sake of the workforce as well as the quality of the services they provide. Reflective supervision/consultation (RS/C) is an ongoing professional development practice that helps professionals process the emotional experience of working with young children and families. This qualitative study explores the social and emotional well-being of early childhood professionals engaging in RS/C practices. Ninety-seven reflective supervisors across the nation completed an online survey about their current practice of RS/C. The survey included questions about why they became reflective supervisors, what helped them learn and maintain their RS/C skills, and what effects of RS/C they experienced and perceived in others. Qualitative, inductive analysis of these open-ended questions revealed RS/C skills and experiences that aligned with four social and emotional well-being themes: emotional skills, reflective skills, stress-coping skills, and supportive relationships. Practice or Policy: With the high rates of turnover and job stress encountered by early childhood professionals, new strategies are needed to support their social and emotional well-being. RS/C is a unique professional development practice rapidly increasing in use and holds promise for building early childhood professionals’ social and emotional well-being.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
for this study was generously provided by the Lynne and Andrew Redleaf Foundation. We appreciate the participation of reflective supervisors across the country who responded to the survey and shared their experiences.
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