Date: 13-08-2020

ISSA Presented Country Profiles During the African Conference on Quality ECE

Evidence shows that educators and teachers are the key drivers of quality education. When they are qualified, well trained and supported, and enjoy adequate working conditions, they are able to provide children with quality learning experiences that will lead to positive developmental outcomes and educational success. However, ECE educators are often confronted with a lack of training and professional development opportunities, pedagogical support, career development pathways and adequate working conditions. These and other challenges were discussed during the African Conference on Quality Early Childhood Education and Professionalization of Educators held in Casablanca in December 2019 where ISSA presented facts and figures.

During the Conference, ISSA Senior Program Officer Francesca Colombo together with UNESCO Consultant Yuxi Wang presented 18 country profiles which were compiled with the objective to facilitate country comparisons, benchmarking and experience exchange. This initiative by UNESCO is aimed at highlighting trends in ECE and its personnel, providing key information about early childhood education and the system/policy on the ECCE personnel, serving as a tool for country comparison and benchmarking and experience-sharing, and finding the evidence/data gap on ECCE personnel.

Data analysis highlighted the major challenges that ECE face among the participating countries. They include:

  • Poor remuneration – some governments do not pay salaries.
  • Lack of adequately trained personnel.
  • Inadequate training of personnel.
  • Lack of or limited supervision of ECE workforce.
  • Low staff morale.
  • High turnover rates of trained staff.
  • High percentage of volunteer staff.

These workforce challenges were related to regulatory regimes, lack of clear ECE policy and teacher education policy, lack of pre-service training institutions and trainers, absence of quality standards, limited financial investment and insufficient awareness about the importance of ECE.

More information about trends and recent and ongoing achievements in ECE personnel development and management can be found here.