workshop A held by Jan Peeters, Ghent University, Gent, Belgium

Continuous Professional Development (CPD) within a competent ECEC system

In this workshop we give an overview of the latest European research on effective CPD in ECEC. Which kind of CPD increases the quality of the service and has a positive effect on child outcomes? And what can practice and policy learn from it?

workshop B held by Judith Kainhofer, PH Salzburg Stefan Zweig, Salzburg, Austria

Promoting young children’s language competence

In this workshop, we will consider possibilities how to promote children’s language competence in the field of tension between communicative needs and the need to acquire structural properties of a given language. We will also address how the needs of monolingual and bi-/multilingual children as well as the specific needs of children with language acquisition delay or language impairment can be taken into account and which competencies are needed on the pedagogists‘ side.

workshop C held by Caroline Leeson, York St. John University, York, United Kingdom

Early years leadership as bricolage

Leadership as a concept is a relatively new phenomenon in the provision of early years education and care. Leadership theory, itself, has been around since Plato (who spoke of a guardian class) and has evolved from a focus on character traits to how transformational change might occur within organisations and/or communities. Just as there have been debates as to what leadership looks like, the role of a ‘leader’ is also subject to many different interpretations – often heavily influenced by policy. Furthermore, we have seen the rise of a global narrative that places the early years as the most important period in a child’s life which has placed high levels of expectation and accountability on those who work with young children and their families. Increasingly, the discourse has become one that seeks simple answers to complex issues; a search for the ‘one’ leadership style that meets the requirements of global imperatives to develop early years provision.  In this presentation, I will argue that there should not be a pursuit of the perfect leadership model; rather that the best way forward is for leaders to select as required from the many leadership models offered; just as an enterprising artisan would create a design to suit their tastes and skills. If we take the ingredients of leadership to be bricks, wood, glass and mortar in differing quantities, then following this approach means that for some leaders the end result will be a traditional house, for some it will be an apartment block and for others, an avant-garde home.

workshop D held by Yvonne Anders – Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany

Measuring and improving the quality of preschool-family partnership

There is growing interest for the quality of partnership between preschools and parents as a component of preschool quality. This workshop gives insight into methods of measuring the quality of partnership between preschools and parents. Different measures of improving this component of pedagogical quality of preschools will be developed.