Knowledge Hub

TOY for Inclusion: project results

In 2018, TOY for Inclusion has opened eight Play Hubs in seven European countries: one in Belgium, Croatia, Latvia, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia and two in Italy.

Thanks to the work of local communities and professionals, the TOY for Inclusion Play Hubs provide opportunities for children and adults, Roma and non-Roma, to integrate and develop.

The project has been successful in fostering social inclusion for Romani young children and families, enhancing social cohesion and easing out the transition to primary school.

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Parental involvement in reading activities in Roma and non-Roma families

In a recent study conducted in the scope of ISOTIS, in Portugal, Roma families and non-Roma families experiencing financial hardship, with 3 to 6 year-old children, were interviewed about the frequency of reading activities involving adults and children at their home.

Findings indicated that the frequency of adult-child reading activities at home can be potentiated by reinforcing Roma families’ educational aspirations for their children, and by creating opportunities for positive social interactions between parents in the preschool setting, particularly for families experiencing financial hardship. A poster of the study is available.

 

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Roma Health Report: data collection in the Member States of the European Union

The purpose of this report is to provide an evidence-based review of literature on Roma health, covering 2008-2013 and the following indicators:

1. Mortality and life expectancy
2. Prevalence of major infectious diseases
3. Healthy life styles and related behaviours
4. Access and use of health services and prevention programmes
5. Prevalence of major chronic diseases
6. Health factors related to the role of women in the Roma community
7. Environmental and other socio-economic factors

The methodology used was based on two steps: (i) Desk Research based on the review of secondary data (a literature review); and (ii) Fieldwork collecting primary data through semi-structured interviews.

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Executive function: skills for life and learning

Research on the developing brain shows us that early childhood experiences build the foundation for a skilled workforce, a responsible community, and a thriving economy. A new evidence base has identified a set of skills that are essential for school achievement, for the preparation and adaptability of the future workforce, and for avoiding a wide range of population health problems.

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Inclusiveness of Early Childhood Education and Care: Seven Case Studies across Europe Executive Summary

This report focuses on the experiences and perceptions of disadvantaged families (in particular, low-income families with and without a migration background) in the field of early childhood education and care. It presents case studies based on focus groups with parents and interviews with professionals working in the ECEC sector in seven cities in Europe. It distinguishes between (un)equal opportunities, (un)equal treatment and (un)equal outcomes in analysing different sources of inequalities and possibilities to address them. Unequal opportunities are defined as inequalities in exogenous conditions (e.g. family income) that affect the accessibility of ECEC services. Unequal treatment refers to endogenous barriers within the services, either at systems or at local implementation level. Strategies to combat inequalities can promote either more equal opportunities or more equal treatment. In some cases, ‘equal outcomes strategies’ reach beyond this distinction and indeed involve priority treatment of disadvantaged groups.

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Inclusion from the start: guidelines on inclusive early childhood care and education for Roma children

The publication is the fruit of joint collaboration between the Council of Europe and UNESCO, which are committed to supporting the well-being and flourishing of Roma children and their right to education and development from birth. It is a concrete follow-up to the recommendations arising from an expert meeting on “Toward quality education for Roma children: transition from early childhood to primary education” organised in 2007 by the two bodies. It is hoped that the Guidelines will incite greater attention to, and above all, appropriate actions for, young Roma children by providing clear policy and programmatic pointers to conceiving an inclusive early childhood care and education system.

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FEEL – Fostering Effective Early Learning study

The 2018 Fostering Effective Early Learning (FEEL) study focuses on the importance of quality, and how to strengthen it in early childhood education and care (ECEC) settings. Extensive research demonstrates that the benefits of ECEC for children are increased when the service provider and educators are highly skilled and participate in professional development (PD), and the service is of high quality. Upskilling the workforce, including in-service professional development, is considered to be a key to improving quality, and can produce substantial and practical improvements for staff and children alike.

Building on the existing body of international research, the findings of the Fostering Effective Early Learning (FEEL) study, address the need for quality improvement in ECEC by showing how a particular form of evidence-based in-service PD can produce substantial and practically meaningful improvements in both staff practices and child outcomes. The FEEL study was conducted by the research team from Early Start, University of Wollongong, on behalf on the NSW Department of Education

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