Children have a right to a quality childhood which includes the following:
- Environments that:
respond to and promote individual differences and appreciation of individual capabilities
value differences across families, their backgrounds, and use these to support individual and community learning.
foster development where children can explore and initiate their own learning
surrounds children with caring adults who foster self-confidence, appropriate decision-making, and, social and emotional growth and expression.
Families are recognized as children's most important teacher and are supported by the following:
- Responsive, respectful, reciprocal partnerships with professionals.
- Ongoing opportunities to:
- share about their children's learning and needs
- actively engage in the development of learning opportunities for children
- continue learning about child development and strategies to support health development and growth.
- shape policies and development of early learnings programs/systems.
Communities need a comprehensive system of early childhood services in which:
- The community:
- shares a responsibility/role for all children's well being (i.e. social, emotional, physical, and intellectual)
- believes that nurturing care, health and education of young children are inseparable, and, that assessment is inclusive of multiple sources of information.
- views everyone as learners and teachers
- Partnerships are developed within the community for children to be successful
- Early learning systems/programs are ready to serve all children based on the child's development and unique background.
- Services are nondiscriminatory, multicultural, multilingual, and have integrated curricula that fosters the development of all children, and supports all families.
Public policy must be designed to:
- Recognize the early learning experiences are foundational for lifelong learning.
- Develop a comprehensive early childhood system that address the whole child and value and support the needs of families.
- Allocate and provide funding/incentives for early learning partnerships, and, encourage the collective participation of all major stakeholders in the community
- Value early childhood professionals (including monetarily) on a basis comparable to other educators for their contributions
- Bridge career opportunities with a common early childhood certification system.
For questions about this information, contact Sherry Kimball (608) 267-9625