Quarter of early childhood teachers wouldn't endorse their own centre - report

More than a quarter of childcare and kindergarten teachers wouldn't let their children attend their own centre, a survey sampling 900 has found. 

In a detailed report from 2017, chief executive of ChildForum Dr Sarah Alexander says nothing has improved at all since the last survey, conducted three years earlier.

"Are service operators/owners and the Ministry of Education not interested in trying to improve quality?" writes Dr Alexander. 

"Do they consider that the current situation is acceptable and is being adequately managed?

"If this is the case then this would be like saying that a 73 percent literacy rate is good or that it would be acceptable if only 73 percent of people have access to clean drinking water."

Dr Alexander told Newshub that concerns "tend to be largely around issues of child safety, large child numbers, high stress that teachers are experiencing, an under-resourcing."

One survey respondent wrote in response to a question on whether they would enrol their own child at their centre: "Hell no! I want my children alive and I want the people educating my child to be resourced, respected, valued, qualified and experienced."

Another said that after only three years teaching, they've just resigned from their centre. 

"My conscience would not let me stay part of a system that is akin to factory farming for children." 

Dr Alexander writes that the Ministry, in response to the 2014 survey, took a simplistic approach to defining 'quality'.

"For example it claims that 98 percent of all services meet or exceed licensing standards. This does not tell us what ECE is actually like for children and whether those working within ECE services would endorse the quality for children." wrote Dr Alexander. 

"We could and should be doing better."