International Review of Early Childhood Education and Care – Release of a Major Australian Report
The importance of early childhood education and care has been highlighted following the release today of the Australian Background Report on the state of early childhood education and care in Australia. The Minister for Education, Training and Youth Affairs, Dr David Kemp, and the Minister for Family and Community Services, Senator Amanda Vanstone, jointly released the report.
“The Australian Background Report provides an overview of early childhood education and care which will be an excellent source of information for practitioners, policy makers and researchers,” Dr Kemp said.
The report, prepared by Ms Frances Press and Professor Alan Hayes of the Institute of Early Childhood at Macquarie University, is a major result of Australia’s participation in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Thematic Review of Early Childhood Education and Care Policy.
This report provides an overview of the context, historical origins, current provision and policy directions of Australian early childhood education and care. Issues such as quality, access, staffing, program content, family engagement, funding evaluation and research are all addressed within an Australian context.
Twelve countries around the world have participated in the review, which is designed to provide decision makers with information and analysis to aid in developing policy in the area of early childhood education and care.
“Participation in the review has been a valuable opportunity for Australia to look critically at how we address early childhood education and care. It will enable us to explore policy directions for the future in this important area,” Senator Vanstone said.
The Commonwealth Department of Education, Training and Youth Affairs and the Commonwealth Department of Family and Community Services jointly funded Australia’s participation in the review.
The twelve countries participating in the review are Australia, the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Belgium (Flemish and French communities), Portugal, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Italy, the Czech Republic and the Netherlands. A Comparative Report focussing on all twelve countries will be completed by June 2001. Further information on the review can be found at OECD website