We welcome the Council Recommendation’s emphasis on the need for ECEC services that are of high quality, provided in a safe, nurturing and caring environment, based on the existing Recommendation on High-Quality Early Childhood Education and Care Systems.
In line with our previous recommendations we urge Member States to:
- Implement ambitious national plans to increase participation in quality ECEC services for all
children – especially children under three – with specific targets for ensuring the participation of
children facing poverty, exclusion and disadvantage.
- Increase public investment in quality ECEC that is available and accessible for all children, and
especially children under three.
- Develop national strategies to ensure quality ECEC services and to increase the professionalisation
of ECEC staff through a minimum standard of qualification, continuous professional development
and improved working conditions.
- Expand the scope of national collection of disaggregated data on access to quality ECEC for
children, especially for children under three and who experience poverty, social exclusion,
marginalisation/segregation and multiple disadvantage. This requires disaggregated data on the
degree of access to, and benefits of, ECEC for the most vulnerable groups, in particular children
living in extreme poverty, children with disabilities, refugee and (undocumented) migrant children
and children from ethnic minorities (especially Roma children as the largest ethnic minority
subject to exclusion). It should include disaggregated data on children aged 0-3 and 3-6 and also
on rural/urban or regional disparities.
- Measure progress explicitly through a national monitoring and evaluation mechanism built on
existing progress indicators, integrated in the Child Guarantee action plans, with scope to develop
further progress indicators