Theme: Early Childhood Care & Education (ECCE)
Location: Kep, Mondulkiri, Prey Veng, Ratanakiri, Takeo Provinces CAMBODIA
children between 3 and 8 years old
parents, teachers & school directors
authorities & community leaders
Although policies on Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) are in place in Cambodia, and National Early Learning Development Standards are part of the pre-primary curriculum, access to quality pre-school education continues to be a challenge in Cambodia – only 20% of children in Cambodia entering primary school in 2016 had participated in any form of school-readiness program. This issue is particularly widespread in Cambodia’s rural and remote areas where many poor, vulnerable and ethnic minority families live.
Children who do not acquire the basic foundational skills for learning, face a high risk of dropping out of school or having to repeat their school year during the early grades. There is increased evidence of the role of quality ECCE in the acquisition of these foundation skills, in the children’s cognitive and socio-emotional development and in setting them up for successful lifelong learning.
Some of the hurdles that stand in the way of Cambodian children accessing quality ECCE include:
- no or little awareness and recognition of the importance of ECCE
- insufficient active engagement of parents during early learning and the education process
- a lack of human resources for ECCE, including staff and qualified pre-school teachers
- challenges faced by the Cambodian education system in general: lack of educational, technical, and financial resources; insufficient and underqualified teachers; poor management systems; a plethora of factors that keep or take children out of school such as discrimination against children with disabilities or overage learners, language barriers, distance to school, poor school environments, gender-based violence, migration, child labour, exploitation, family difficulties and poverty.
With this project, we give children access to quality early childhood care and education by helping to improve the quality of teaching and learning, promoting responsive parenting and stimulating local ownership of ECCE.
More in particular, we help increase school enrollment of 3- to 8-year-old children so they can transition more successfully to primary school. With our training and technical support, early childhood educators can create sustainable, quality and child-friendly learning environments. And we expand community child care and development programs by conducting community activities which promote positive parenting/care-giving and which build ECCE skills and knowledge.
Our activities include:
- Raising community awareness about the importance of pre-school education
- Mobilizing communities to make pre-school education a reality
- Setting up community preschools (renovating buildings and classrooms and furnishing them as ECCE spaces)
- Training pre-school teachers in teaching methodologies and the use of the curriculum (in collaboration with Provincial Offices of Education)
- Creating and updating ECCE teaching materials as well as decorating class rooms
- Opening preschools and enrolling children from 3 to 5 years old
- Supply ECCE materials and snacks to children from 3 to 5 years old
- Support the active teaching methods of formal pre-school centres and community facilities
- Conduct ECCE Training of Trainers to school-based parenting education facilitators
- Monitor pre-school activities and management
- Advocate for more public resources for early childhood development
Key Partner: iLEAD International School