Early Childhood Education and Care: Key Lessons from Research for Policy Makers

Helen Penn
NESSE Report, 2009

This report is about investments in quality of Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC). A key message emerging from this report is that quality ECEC services can enhance children’s subsequent school performance. A second lesson is that ECEC services, however good, are important but not sufficient on their own to redress the effects of child poverty and disadvantage and to change life chances. Investments should be made in a spectrum of policies that affect young children’s lives. A third message from the research reviewed here is that ECEC policy development and implementation is a complex issue and crosses traditional administrative barriers. It requires an integrated approach with cooperation and coordination across sectors and policy fields.

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