National ECCE Week 2012
Rights from the Start! Early Childhood Care and Education Now!
Education for All (EFA), which underscores the right of all individuals to basic education, has “expanding and improving comprehensive early childhood care and education (ECCE), especially for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children” as Goal 1. The importance of early childhood care and education and the right of every child to ECCE were acknowledged in the Jomtien Declaration 1990. This importance and right were reaffirmed in the Dakar Declaration 2000. However, little attention was given to ECCE until neuro-scientific findings reveal the significance of the experiences in the early formative years on the developing brain. Global interest in ECCE is further enhanced by the abundant evidence of the high returns of investment in quality ECCE which derive from reduction in school dropout and criminal rate and from cost savings resulting from lower expenditure on remedial programmes, criminal justice administration, security, health care and welfare services. The first UNESCO Global Conference on EFA Goal 1 in Moscow (2010) produced a final statement recognizing that children’s right to early childhood care and education begins at birth.
The overwhelming research evidence from psychology, neuroscience, genetics and education of the importance of a child’s earliest years in shaping his or her learning and development makes it imperative for us in Malaysia to provide all children with quality early child care and education as early as possible. The government acknowledges that the early formative years are critical to the development and wellbeing of the nation by establishing the ECCE Council under the Economic Transformation Programme to advocate for quality early child care and education and professional early childhood educators. This recognition of the government is reiterated by the allocation given to ECCE in the Budget 2013.
The theme for the National ECCE Week 2012 is ‘Rights from the Start! Early Childhood Care and Education Now! The Council selects this theme as it depicts the Council’s concern that
(i) the right of the child to early childhood care and education is not appreciated by many
(ii) many children, especially those living in challenging circumstances, are deprived of quality child care and
(iii) about 27% of the children are not in preschool in spite of the Ministry of Education’s efforts to increase preschool enrolment.
In addition, it is also the theme for Global Campaign for ECCE.
||BUZZING on “Stop, Think and Change”.There will be Buzz Groups meeting all over the country to examine our current practices and to consider these practices can be further refined to improve quality ECCE in Malaysia.Venue: Nationwide
||Launch of the National ECCE Week 2012 at the ECCEForum on “Rights from the Start! Early Child Care and Education Now!” by Deputy Prime Minister YAB Tan Sri Dato’ Hj Muhyiddin Hj. Mohd Yassin.Venue: Sime Darby Convention Centre
||ECCE FORUMThe Forum will bring together child advocates to address key ECCE issues in the country.Venue: Sime Darby Convention Centre
||ECCE Inter-Varsity ChallengeECCE Inter-Varsity Challenge is the first of its kind Sports event where students and lecturers of ECCE Colleges and Universities compete for the President’s Cup. The event will promote youth involvement in ECCE advocacy campaigns.Venue : To be confirmed
||“Bring a Needy Friend for FUN” CampaignThis event is to expose underprivileged preschool children to quality ECCE experiences.Venue: National Science Centre, Mt Kiara
||ECCE Events to be held at colleges, preschools, childcare centres, etc. to promote “Rights from the Start! Early Child Care and Education Now!”Venue: Nationwide
Please contact Ms Mageswary at the Council Office for further details on the National ECCE week 2012.