Children are missing out on critical early learning opportunities
Programmes devoted to early childhood care and education (ECCE) support the role of parents and communities at a critical time in a child’s development. However, according to the latest UIS data, ECCE remains one of the most neglected areas of education.
Ranging from crèches for the very young to pre-schools, ECCE programmes can help ensure a child’s well-being. In addition to the interaction and play that children need for cognitive development, these programmes can provide basic health care and nutrition, cushion children from social disruption and protect their rights.
ECCE also prepares children for primary school, contributing to higher enrolment and completion rates. For these reasons, governments concerned with universal primary education and other Education for All commitments have set targets for ECCE. And yet, disparities in access to programmes persist, leaving behind the most disadvantaged children. In some countries, the gap between government targets and social realities is significant.
How many years of pre-primary education are available in a country? How many years do children actually get? The UIS has created an interactive graphic illustrating the impact that barriers like poverty and limited availability of programmes can have on access to early childhood care and education.
Click on the chart below to view the difference between the number of years of pre-primary education offered in a country (reflected by the intended duration indicator) and the amount of time children actually spend in such programmes (reflected by the school life expectancy indicator).