New Zealand's newest professor of early childhood education, Professor Helen Hedges, says New Zealand needs to place more value on ECE and reflect this in policy and budgetary decisions.
"All 3, 4 and 5-year-olds can get free early childhood education for up to 6 hours a day, up to 20 hours a week" – this is what is stated on the NZ Government's website. But 20 hours of early childhood education is not fees-free for all eligible children.
Pacific-language preschools say they have been set back 30 years by tough new English language tests that have forced the closure of all dedicated Pacific preschool teaching courses.
ChildForum's recent survey painted a grim picture of New Zealand's early childhood education centres. General Manager of PORSE Education & Training and mum of two ERIN MALONEY believes home-based ECE is a better alternative.
GARRETT KETT says that the early childhood education sector is becoming dominated by profiteers and investors looking to receive a tidy profit from as little effort as possible.
More than a quarter of childcare centre workers say they would not place their own children in the centres they work in, with some calling them "akin to factory farming of children".
A parents' revolt has forced a rethink of plans to turn Auckland's kindergartens into all-day centres.