Working with multilingual children and families in early childhood education and care (ECEC): guidelines for continuous professional development of ECEC professionals


An increasing number of children are growing up in environments in which more than one language is spoken. For many of these children, early childhood education and care (ECEC) is often their first contact with the majority language of the country in which they are growing up. This situation adds to the crucial role that ECEC professionals play in children’s education.

This report aims to formulate research- and practice-based policy recommendations for high-quality continuous professional development (CPD) to support ECEC professionals working with multilingual children and families.

This report is built upon two sources of secondary data: 1) a literature review on multilingualism, CPD, ECEC and diversity, which draws on scientific research articles, international reviews and reports of relevant European projects (presented in Chapter 2); 2) two case studies: one on Griffbereit and Rucksack KiTa in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany, and another on Elmer Childcare services in Brussels, Belgium (presented in Chapter 3). Chapter 4 of the report provides general recommendations, while Chapter 5 explores how the report’s key findings and recommendations apply to CPD relating to working with multilingual children and families with a refugee background.


Lisandre Bergeron-Morin, Brecht Peleman, Hester Hulpia

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