ERIC Number: ED438958
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Early Childhood Services for Kindergarten-Age Children in Four Canadian Provinces: Scope, Nature and Models for the Future.
Johnson, Laura C.; Mathien, Julie
The Early Years Project investigated early childhood education programs for kindergarten-age children in the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, and Alberta. This study combined quantitative and qualitative data to: (1) document changes in kindergarten and child care and their impact since 1990; (2) investigate how kindergarten and child care could combine to meet children's and families' needs; (3) compare and contrast kindergarten and child care services; and (4) obtain views of parents, teachers, child care staff, and key informants on current early childhood education and prospects for the future. Data were collected by means of surveys, personal interviews, focus groups, and program observations. From the findings, profiles were developed describing recent changes and the current environment for kindergarten and child care in each province. The findings indicated that most parents supported an integrated early childhood program providing a combination of full-day, year-round care and education through the school system, with teachers and child care staff less enthusiastic. The majority of kindergarten and child care programs observed received acceptable to very good scores with regard to program quality, with the presence of trained staff being the most important predictor of quality. Parents, child care staff, and teachers agreed that social features and language activities were the most important aspects of early childhood education and agreed that kindergarten was appropriately more academic than child care. Preliminary calculations indicated that program integration was no more expensive than the current split provision. Based on findings, recommendations were devised for policy at the national level and for responsibilities at the local and provincial levels. (KB)
Descriptors: Caregiver Attitudes, Childhood Needs, Day Care, Family Needs, Foreign Countries, Kindergarten, Kindergarten Children, Models, Observation, Parent Attitudes, Primary Education, Program Descriptions, Public Policy, Teacher Attitudes, Trend Analysis
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Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Human Resources Development Canada, Ottawa (Ontario).
Authoring Institution: Celadon Inst. of Social Policy, Ottawa (Ontario).
Identifiers - Location: Canada