Political party ECE policies – election 2014
As election-day approaches, political parties are releasing their policies on early childhood education (ECE). Children’s wellbeing and addressing child poverty are emerging as top priorities, and access to quality early childhood education is a central feature. New Zealand Kindergartens (NZK) welcomes the focus on children. NZK would like to see government:
- establish the legal right for every child to access high quality early childhood education;
- fund universal access to high quality early childhood education, and in addition, target funding to increase participation especially among Māori, Pasifika and low-income communities and to support children with additional education needs;
- regulate and fund teacher-led, centre-based services to ensure every teacher is a qualified and registered teacher, including teachers working with children under the age of two years;
- regulate to ensure maximum group size of no more than 50 children over two years of age and no more than 25 under two years old in centre-based services;
- provide the necessary level of support for on-going professional development of ECE teachers to deepen and extend curriculum knowledge and expertise, and to build leadership capacity within the ECE sector and across the broader education sector;
- implement a cohesive policy development strategy across the ECE and schools sector to deepen professional relationships and strengthen transitions for children and families moving from ECE to school;
- increase support for community-based ECE services to increase participation and promote sustainable community development including support for integrated services in priority communities;
- establish a national process in collaboration with the ECE sector, to determine and plan services to meet future demand.
For a summary of the ECE policies of each of the main political parties based on current public information, visit the New Zealand Kindergarten website at www.nzkindergarten.org.nz and click on election 2014.
For more information about NZK, visit www.nzkindergarten.org.nz. For further comment: Please contact NZK Chief Executive Clare Wells 0272 955 044