The Education and Care Divide: the role of the early childhood workforce in 15 European countries
The early childhood education and care (ECEC) workforce plays a critical role in the quality of provision. There has been growing interest by policymakers at the local and international levels and ample research has shown a clear consensus about the importance of quality in ECEC. This research article focuses on the role of assistants in ECEC based on a holistic conceptualization of education and care and examines 15 European country profiles. The authors argue that the concept of schoolification might lead to a division between education and care resulting from the divided roles between assistants and core practitioners. The findings are discussed in terms of implications for practice and policy.