Around one hundred Early Childhood Education (ECE) specialists from Education International affiliates worldwide are meeting in Vienna, Austria, today and tomorrow to take stock of the current state of ECE around the world, and to discuss the way forward for EI in this field.
Prominent guest speakers in the field, among them Mathias Urban of the University of Roehampton (United Kingdom), Marisa Krenn-Wache of the Federal Institute of Kindergarten Pedagogy (Klagenfurt, Austria), and Olivier Liang of the ILO, are giving keynote presentations about the impact of the financial and economic crises in the sector, developments in quality teaching and training for ECE, and about the new ILO guidelines on the promotion of decent work for ECE Personnel.
Moreover, participants share experiences from ECE practice from all over the world, and discuss current challenges for quality early childhood education in different countries and regions.
ETUCE President Christine Blower, who opened the conference, shared how in her work as primary school teacher, she was able to build on the work done by her colleagues in the years before. “ECE is an education in its own right and an essential part of life-long learning,” she emphasized. “We believe that early childhood education is of great value to all children and should be available to all.”