S27_1600 Jan Georgeson - ISCAR 2014 Presentations

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Leading across boundaries:
how early years leaders support
interprofessional working
Jan Georgeson and Jane Payler
Plymouth University and University of Winchester
Theoretical underpinnings

Holland and Lave
◦ Social Practice Theory/ figured worlds;
◦ Integration of individual emotion, motivation and agency into CHAT
◦ Improvisation and innovation within constraints/affordances by particular
persons in particular contexts

Dreier
◦ Learning as trajectories of participation in social practice
◦ Resources and constraints of contexts
◦ Personal action potency of individuals in context
◦ Institutions enable personal action potency (Payler and Georgeson, 2013)
Boundaries
Socio-cultural differences that give rise to discontinuities in
interaction and action …
… carry learning potential.
(Akkerman and Bakker, 2011:139/132)
Boundary crossing competence:
ability to function competently in multiple contexts..
…cultural brokers and complex tools serve as boundary
objects ..[..].. serve as recontextualising agents - a sort of
bridge – between social practices.
(Walker and Nocon, 2007:178/182)
Relational agency: professionals have to recognise others’
motives and the resources they bring to the boundaries and
work to expand object of activity
(Edwards, 2010:14)
Figured worlds

socially organized and reproduced, which
means that in them people are sorted and learn
to relate to each other in different ways.

distribute people by relating them to
landscapes of action; thus activities related to the
worlds are populated by familiar social types
and host to individual senses of self.
(Urrieta, 2007:108)
Nurseries as Figured Worlds
Investigating Interprofessional
Practice: data collection
Survey of Early Years practitioners (52)
◦ Ratings, multiple choice questions and open ended
comments
◦ range of career trajectories/experience/settings
5 case studies
◦ Interviews with 5 practitioners, 6 graduate leaders and 5
parents (435 mins)
◦ Video data from child-practitioner interactions over 8 days
(510 mins)
◦ Children’s IEPs
Research Question
How confident do early years
professionals feel about leading
interprofessional practice?
SURVEY + CASE STUDY INTERVIEW
Survey – 52 respondents
working in
Children’s Community Indep
Pre-school PreCentre
school
Private Other
Day
Day
Nursery N’s
10
6
17
16
3
Findings: Survey

Mixed responses from practitioners with similar
years of experience, in same type of setting

Staff in Children’s Centres were generally more
positive and more confident
Staff in private day nurseries and community
preschools generally less positive & least confident


But picture is complex; wide range of comments
within each setting type
Confidence in leading
How confident do you feel about taking
a lead role in multi-agency working?
I haveOverall,
never had to
do this
so anything than
that you
have taking
to do for
less
confident
with
the first time
is daunting.
(Children’sprocesses
Centre practitioner)
Sometimes
confused
about legislation,
involved
on a leadership role in general.
(Independent
Preschool
practitioner)
Each
agency (for
example,
social workers, police) have their own
agendaand
sometimes
in meetings it can be hard to say what your
Lack
of opportunity/experience
professional opinion is (Day Nursery practitioner)
 Lack of knowledge
 Lack of status
Confidence in leading
How confident do you feel about taking
a lead role in multi-agency working?
I am a confident person. I've also now been working for long
enough in the sector to have experience which helps in being a
15 practitioners rated their confidence
leader. I've made mistakes and had to learn from them which in
same
orunderstanding
higher than
leadership
in general:
the end
builds
(Community
Preschool
Training and own studying and knowledge. (Private Day
practitioner)
(12
confident)
Due
to myconfident/very
years of experience in
childcare and the amount of
Nursery
practitioner)
professionals I have worked with. (Independent Preschool
 Experience
Practitioner)


Knowledge
Status – or at least contacts
Case study 1: Bounded practice
Pre-school playgroup; pack away setting in
a community centre
“Although we’re on a children’s centre site,
we have no links to them – they’re
completely separate, we purely share a
building.”
Manager is experienced and has been at
the setting for 6 years
Leading within the boundary
As manager I have to oversee all key people to see
that they are keeping up with their cases. I would see it
as my role to be up to date with all children here so that
I can be feeding back to other practitioners.
 As manager I have greater knowledge and they need
that knowledge to back things up.
 Just supporting the whole staff network reminding them
that this is the situation, giving them best tips of how
to deal with [O] because her speech has affected her
behaviour because she couldn’t express herself.
 Modelling good practice; I work very much on the
floor. I’m not a manager with an office, so I’m role
modelling all the time.

Managing geographical
constraints
I have double problems because I’m in
[county] and some of my children will
[city]
services.
That
makes
my
Theyaccess
[children’s
centre]
can only
help
some of
mylife
hugely
complicated
because
depending
on
families.
If I have
someone who
does need
help from
where
yourworker,
postaleven
address
is,they
depends
a family
support
though
would on
where
refer
you. really well, I can’t
know
[familyI can
support
workers]
referI’m
them
here.
(Manager).
really
good
and I know off the top of my
head all the [county] agencies, but [city],
it’s a different thing.
Acting in figured world
lack of direct access to other children’s
I’m not on service
any mail professionals.
shots [for City services so] we’ve had to
form [contacts
withpossible,
City schools]
independently
 where
theourselves
preschool
manager to
help our children. It’s never been provided to me.
fostered relationships with other agencies
to enhance access to knowledge and
services.

Acting in figured world
lack of direct access to other children’s
service professionals.
 where possible, the preschool manager
fostered
relationships
with
other
agencies
Personally I know I have high standing. The setting, and the
access
knowledge
and and
work that to
I’veenhance
done, schools
taketome
seriously. Speech
services.
Language?
They wouldn’t know me. There is no direct
communication
with us at all. by some other agencies
 little understanding
of contemporary preschool practice and
professionalism.
Cultural brokerage through relational agency

Case study 2:
Brokerage from outside
With the
Early Years
Advisory
Teacher,
if something
needs on
Garden
Private
Day
Nursery
dependent
doing, filtering
she tends and
to go advisory
off and do role
it herself
and come
back
of Early
Years
Advisory
Teacher
access
and might
tell us. She
doesn’ttosupport
us insupport
doing it of
other
agencies for children.
ourselves.
(Manager)
“boundaries policed by external agencies
who owed their own position to the
structural apparatus of special education”
(Thomas and Loxley, 2007)
Figured world of external agencies = >
reinforced boundaries
Case study 3. Learning potential
of boundaries

The manager suggested that the Keyperson should ask to
attend Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) sessions at the
health centre with the family so that she could see how best
to support Daniel.
I actually started doing photos of all his areas he liked to play with
 Well
some
surprise)
by theand
SLT;
unusual
and choice
ofreceived
milk and(with
water
to give
him choice
help
in gesturing.
situation - early years staff not routinely invited to SLT
Going to sessions.
SLT helped me because she was actually quite firm with him.
She wouldn’t give him the drink until he chose a picture and gave it
 We
Her needed
time to attend
be funded
by the
pre-school.
to mum.
to be ahad
bit tomore
structured
(Keyperson).

Building bridges: Guided by the Manager, early years
practitioner pushed against the boundaries around services to
create a new opportunity for interprofessional working.
Flexing boundaries => increasing personal action potency
Summary
Leading IP practice needs confidence=
knowledge + experience + status
 Leaders support staff by

◦ recontextualising knowledge
◦ offering opportunities to cross boundaries
◦ using relational agency to act beyond
boundaries

Cultural brokers - or gatekeepers?
Conclusions
Historic arrangements, resourcing and
perceptions constrain action
 External structures and constraints
reinforce boundaries => reduce
affordances in personal action potency
 Flexing boundaries => increasing
personal action potency => developing
boundary crossing competence.

References

Akkerman, S.F. and Baker, A. (2011) Boundary Crossing and Boundary Objects. Review of educational
Research 81: 132-169)

Dreier, O. (1999) ‘Personal Trajectories of Participation across Contexts of Social Practice’. Outlines, Vol. 1,
pp5-32.

Dreier, O. (2002) ‘Learning in Personal Trajectories of Participation’. Proceedings of the International Society
for Theoretical Psychology Conference, Canada.

Edwards, A. (2010) Being an expert Professional Practitioner; the relational turn in expertise. Professional and
practice –based learning. Vol. 3 Dordrecht: Springer.

Holland, D. and Lave, J. (2009) Social Practice Theory and the Historical Production of Persons. Actio: An
International Journal of Human Activity Theory. 2, 1-15.

Payler, J. and Georgeson, J (2013) Personal action potency: Early years practitioners participating in
interprofessional practice in early years settings International Journal of Early Years Education

Payler, J. and Georgeson, J (2013) Multiagency working in the early years: confidence, competence and
context. Early Years: an international Research Journal 33 (4)

Thomas, G. and Loxley, A. (2007). Deconstructing Special Education and Constructing Inclusion.
Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Urrieta, L. Jr. (2007). “Figured Worlds and Education: An Introduction to the Special Issue.” The Urban Review
39(2), 107-116.

Walker, D. and Nocon, H. (2007). “Boundary-Crossing Competence: Theoretical Considerations and
Educational Design.” Mind, Culture, and Activity, 14(3) 178-195
Forms and procedures travelling
between contexts
Variety of transferable artefacts mentioned
in survey and cases
◦ Referral forms
◦ CAF (Common Assessment Framework)
◦ Reports and recommendations from other
agencies
But
 require knowledge of system (including
relational agency)
 Poor substitute for face to face contact
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