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ERIC Number: EJ764337
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jun
Pages: 10
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 44
ISSN: ISSN-0966-9760
Early Childhood Professionals and Children's Rights: Tensions and Possibilities around the United Nations "General Comment No. 7" on Children's Rights
Mac Naughton, Glenda; Hughes, Patrick; Smith, Kylie
International Journal of Early Years Education, v15 n2 p161-170 Jun 2007
Young children's views are heard rarely in public debates and are often subordinated to adults' views. This article examines how early childhood staff could support and enhance young children's participation in public decision making. We argue that when early childhood staff use their expertise in young children's physical, social and cognitive development to facilitate consultations with young children, they are likely to reinforce the view that young children are unable to form and express their own views. Whatever their intentions, this weakens the notion of children's rights and undermines young children's participation in public decision making. In contrast, when staff use their expertise in child development to collaborate with young children, new social structures can emerge in which everyone's voice is heard. This approach reaffirms staff's status as experts, but redefines their expertise. Instead of being experts acting on behalf of children, staff become equitable collaborators with children, advancing citizenship for all.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia