The Latest News In
Early Childhood Development
In The Pacific

PRC4ECCE NEWSLETTER              Quarter 4, December 2016

PEARL, the Pacific Early Age Readiness and Learning Project, is a World Bank program that helps prepare children for school through play-based activities led by parents and communities. It also trains teachers on effective teaching practices for early reading and writing. Now in its third year of implementation, initial results of PEARL's pilot phase in Tonga show improved teaching practices and reading outcomes for children. The project is also supporting school readiness and early grade reading in Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.  Find out about the latest PEARL teacher workshop here.
An innovative approach to community-led early childhood education in the Solomon Islands features in a resource pack recently released by the Asia-Pacific Regional Network for Early Childhood (ARNEC). The pack contains nine case studies across the Asia-Pacific region where innovative education approaches have successfully been adapted to local contexts. One of the cases is the initiative of Save the Children in Solomon Islands that empowers communities to lead and conduct play-based learning activities with their children . Download the resource pack here.
Several milestones around early childhood education in Fiji occurred in August 2010. Firstly, the Education Ministry announced increased ECE teacher salaries for the year. In the same month, the Education Ministry held Fiji's first-ever Early Childhood Education conference with an inspiring keynote address by the Education Minister Honorable Mahendra Reddy. What's more, the Speaker of Parliament, Honorable Dr. Jiko Luveni, was appointed as the Champion of Early Childhood Care and Education, having signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Fiji Early Childhood Teachers Association. Congratulations, Fiji!
It has taken almost two years but finally, a comprehensive article on early childhood care and education (ECCE) in the Pacific has now been published in Springer's book, Early Childhood Education Policies in Asia Pacific. Authored by Wendy-Rich Orloff and Ufemia Camaitoga, Chapter 9 of the book reports on Pacific-wide research on ECCE conducted by PRC4ECCE, using the lens of the Pacific Guidelines for the Development of National Quality Frameworks for ECCE. The publication is a notable step in highlighting issues relating to the learning and development of young children in Pacific Island countries. Order the book here.
What happens when you gather 50 of the country's most talented graphic artists, illustrators, and early childhood teachers in the Solomon Islands? A collection of fun, culturally-relevant storybooks featuring important messages for young children, such as not being afraid to go to hospital for vaccinations. UNICEF partnered with the Ministry of Education and Human Resources to develop and promote these early literacy materials. In November 2016, a workshop was held in Guadalcanal province to train teachers and community facilitators on how to use and promote the books among parents through home visits. Email to find out more.
Lancet's latest series, Advancing Early Childhood Development: From Science to Scale, provides even more scientific evidence for the value of early interventions, adding to the already robust data from previous Lancet issues. The October issue focuses on the theme of "nurturing care" by parents and caregivers, and makes the case for health as an entry point for multi-sectoral interventions with very young children. If you are an ECD professional, we recommend you keep abreast of the key findings by accessing the journal here.
THE ASIA-PACIFIC REGIONAL EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCE. Cambodia, Siem Ream (Angkok Wat), 1-3 March 2017. This year's theme is "The Transformative power of ECD: The importance of holistic interventions." Call for proposals is ongoing, with the deadline fast approaching on 9 December 2016.  
2017 WORLD FORUM ON EARLY CARE AND EDUCATION. New Zealand, Auckland, 9-12 May 2017. Join 800 early childhood professionals from over 80 nations at a conference focusing on Sustainability - of childhoods, families, organizations, the planet, each other, and ourselves. Click on the link to register.
CONFERENCE ON MOVING FORWARD WITH SDGs FOR EARLY CHILDHOOD PLANNED FOR SEPTEMBER 2017. PRC4ECCE, with the support of UNICEF and the World Bank, is preparing for a high-level conference bringing together key government officials from different sectors and major stakeholders across Pacific Island countries to strengthen commitment to and action on early childhood care and education. Further updates are forthcoming!
UNICEF WELCOMES NEW ECD SPECIALIST CONSULTANT. Joy Millan joins UNICEF Pacific as its new ECD Specialist Consultant, replacing Wendy Rich-Orloff who has moved to UNICEF Indonesia. Joy will focus on supporting UNICEF's Secretariat role with PRC4ECCE, including preparations for the 2017 conference on ECD, regional research on early childhood, and overseeing social media outlets. Feel free to get in touch with her for anything PRC4ECCE.
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The Pacific Regional Council for Early Childhood Care and Education (PRC4ECCE) provides technical direction and advocacy for high quality, inclusive, and equitable national ECCE systems across Pacific Island countries. UNICEF Pacific currently serves as the Secretariat of PRC4ECCE.

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