ERIC Number: ED345842
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Apr-29
Reference Count: N/A
Visions of the Future of NAEYC and Early Childhood Education.
Katz, Lilian G.
In the coming years, the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) will need to confront a number of issues relating to its structure and mission and the larger context in which the association works. In terms of organizational structure, it is useful to consider the nature of the democratic process and the role that reflection, representation, and responsibility play in that process. Other principles are involved in organizational structures that reflect the democratic process. These principles include: (1) the choice of error, which is that any decision has its own errors embedded within it; (2) the fundamental attribution error, which is the tendency to explain other people's behavior in terms of their dispositions or traits; and (3) the tendency to romanticize the knowledge and contributions of "the grassroots" and neglect the valuable insights of upper-level agency personnel and minority-position visionaries who may not work directly with children. The mission of the NAEYC remains to upgrade the quality of programs and provisions for young children and to improve public understanding of what is required for this upgrading. In the future, this mission might include efforts to keep the focus on developmentally appropriate practices, influence public policies away from the language of "readiness" toward the more encompassing goal of "quality of life," continue work on cultural diversity, and develop standards for early childhood professional development and practice. The public and private contexts in which the NAEYC functions are pervaded by various notions of accountability, confusion about what accountability means, and opinionmakers' tendency to blame schools for the nation's ills. (AC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: National Association Educ of Young Children
Note: Based on a paper presented at the Annual Leadership Conference of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (Washington, DC, April 9-12, 1992).