29 January 2016

Where is the Love?

Given the emphasis that European education agendas have placed on early childhood education in providing the foundations for lifelong learning, the quality of provision--and especially the workforce--is a key concern. Qualification levels are frequently cited as important for the quality of provision, but in their paper in the newest edition of European Education: Issues and Studies, Verity Campbell-Barr and Janet Georgeson from the Plymouth University and Anikó Nagy Varga from the University of Debrecen explore questions of the attitudinal competences required to work in early childhood in England and Hungary. Their paper, "Developing professional early childhood educators in England and Hungary: Where has all the love gone?", presents a mixed-method study that considers the attitudinal competences that early childhood students perceive as necessary. They focus specifically on the role of love in early childhood education and the contrasting perceptions and experiences in England and Hungary. In Hungary love is spoken about freely, but in England a managerialist and entrepreneurial emphasis has created tensions with more emotional ideas of being caring, supportive, and empathic. In Hungary, early childhood educators are given relative autonomy in their professional roles and love is a key characteristic. The paper considers historical, philosophical, and political developments in the two countries to shed light on how English and Hungarian perspectives have diverged. It also explores opportunities that comparing perspectives offers for the further professional development of early childhood educators. If you would like to read this entire paper or any other content from our journal, you can find out more about subscriptions at this page.

19 January 2016

Social Inequalities and Europeans Who Leave School Early

One of the primary goals of educational policy throughout Europe is the reduction in numbers of students who quit the educational system before obtaining a high school qualification. In their article in the most recent edition of European Education: Issues and Studies, Jeroen Lavrijsen and Ides Nicaise from Katholieke Universiteit Leuven note previous research showing that younth from disadvantaged families face relatively high risks of school dropout. Using date from the 2009 ad hoc module of the Labour Force Survey they explore the way that macro-level determinants influence school dropout risks among different social groups. Their findings indicate that both the design of the educational system (in areas such as tracking age and extent of vocational education) and characteristics of the socioeconomic context (such as poverty rate and unemployment patterns) have an impact on the social distribution of school dropout risk. If you would like to read this entire paper or any other content from our journal, you can find out more about subscriptions at this page.