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ERIC Number: EJ1064473
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1463-9491
Subsidizing Early Childhood Education and Care for Parents on Low Income: Moving beyond the Individualized Economic Rationale of Neoliberalism
Simpson, Donald; Envy, Rose
Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, v16 n2 p166-178 Jun 2015
Neoliberalism and an associated "new politics of parenting" adopts a predominantly economic rationale which discursively positions early childhood education and care (ECEC) as essential to tackling several social ills by allowing individual parents (particularly young mothers) to improve their labour force participation, thus boosting family income. This paper considers this discourse and its uptake locally in the context of England. Drawing on qualitative case study research, the paper focuses upon a small number of young mothers who were recipients of nationally and locally subsidized ECEC from 2009 onwards. Although keen to boost individual and family income via paid work through accessing subsidized ECEC, these mothers provide evidence questioning the assumption it can be a panacea helping to reduce susceptibility to low income. Subsidized ECEC's viability in economic terms is critically scrutinized. However, the mothers' narratives support the idea of "a rationality mistake" inflicting ECEC policy. Despite on-going economically bounded conditions of choice, they felt subsidized ECEC's viability was undiminished as it also lay for them in the highly valued access to ordinary patterns, customs and activities in society beyond paid work. This raises important issues in a context where the "value for money" of subsidized ECEC is being questioned.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)