May 18, 2010

Historical Background
ECD is an abbreviation of Early Childhood Development.
This focused on early children careering from embryo, infant and child as human being.
This project focus on how do caregivers take responsibilities to take care of children who lost their parents and they do have to change their primary life style and cope with secondary lives (Lives without/with one parent).
The system of children rearing differs from place to place due to different ideologies, traditions and culture.
To some areas it seems that child rearing start from when a mother is pregnant and the process continue until berth.
At KIWAKKUKI this project took over since 2003 when we started to support caregivers for their children
More bout 1500 families from Moshi Urban, Moshi Rural and Mwanga benefited from this project
A Situation Analysis of Early Childhood Development in Moshi District
• KIWAKKUKI conducted Situation Analysis in 2008.
• The main purpose was to collect and compile useful data needed to identify challenges and opportunities available in the districts especially in the location where KIWAKKUKI has ECD and other interventions.
• The data collected was about ECD challenges, Strengths and opportunities related to preparedness of all young children for successful schooling life, preparedness of schools and links and continuity between community, schools and policy environments to support preparedness of children and school
The district level needs assessment was guided by the three major objectives which are;

• To identify, analyze strengths, opportunities and challenges related to preparedness of young children for success in school and life.
– Assess if families and community members have the ability to provide necessary care and necessary information and socialization for young children
– Assess and establish types and quality mechanisms and support structures required by families, and communities to provide quality services to young children so that they can be ready for successful schooling
– Propose specific recommendations related to the challenges, strengths and opportunities related to preparedness of parents and communities to support all young children’s early success and transition to school.

• To identify and analyze the preparedness of schools for young children’s early success, covering key issues on access, quality, and curriculum and teaching-learning methodologies.
• To propose specific actions for different players based on the strengths, opportunities and challenges related to the links/relationships between family/community and service providers (health care facilities, schools, social work, judiciary etc)
Highlight specific implications for ECD partners strategic planning priorities and the Five Year Programme planning in relation to:-

• National situational analysis of ECD in Tanzania, focusing on the transition and relationships between home and school environments for children, families and communities.
• Levels of awareness of stakeholders on ECD and the overall benefits for children and policy advocacy needs.
• priority needs for capacity development and improvement of ECD service provision (quantity and quality)
• documentation of existing research & research priorities on ECD
Key findings from this study indicate that:About Children preparedness for successful schooling;

• Understanding of parents and care givers about children preparedness for successful schooling and life vary and mixed. It is influenced by a number of factors; these range from past experiences (they way families used to socialize and prepare young children for life), value system, economic realities, peer pressures to availability of quality and appropriate facilities for young children.

• Both communities and parents and care givers are aware of the need for young children to be prepared well so that they can be able to join and succeed in schools, They also indicate that young children have to go through different stage of growth that include language, cognitive, and motor milestones development.

• Overall, it is obvious that, ability of families to support and prepare young children depends on a number of factors ranging from socio-economic status of the family to ability to mitigate such hardships. That is to say, while parents are caregivers are struggling and working very hard to prepare their young children, they also need additional support to achieve their goals primarily from within the community and others as appropriate.
• Community members know that their children should attend school, but are unaware of how to help their children make the most of their education experience. Parents do not understand how other factors, such as health care, maintaining a nutritious and balanced diet, etc., can influence a child’s performance and concentration at school. Women are key in the care for young children including making sure that the socialization for all young children is taking place in a correct way that is consistency with the community expectations.
• Although majority of families reported that they can easily access a variety of services available including health, sanitation, transport etc, poor families still have inadequate or limited access to such resources including community services that are necessary to promote and support children's development and school readiness

Regarding schools preparedness for young children success. It was found that
• Both teachers and schools committees indicated that, in order for schools to be able to receive and prepare new children including young ones for lower classes, they need to have necessary services and facilities. Highly motivated teachers with adequate teaching facilities and overall good environments are what are needed
• In terms of access, the MMEM project has contributed a lot of the improved learning and teaching environment including books and other learning materials situation has improved tremendously such that the book ratio is almost getting to a situation whereby only three pupils are sharing one book except for a very few schools

• The quality of care and formal education arrangement is relatively below average. A few schools do not even meet minimum criteria to be considered safe especially for young children. Very few primary schools and day care centers have adequate supplies or trained teachers. The only requirement of a teacher is to be able to read and write, so often a community member lacking ECD training will be teaching the community’s youth. Due to lack of adequate supplies, such as paper, pens, toys, training tool kits etc students are unable to effectively learn and retain information

The study identified a number of strengths in relations to existing efforts and response for children, school preparedness for and existing linkages which include
Strength for children preparedness includes the following;

• Most families prioritize on nutrition and other basic requirements necessary for grown and development for young children.
• Presence of bi-laws empower village and ward authorities to follow and deal with households and caregivers who delays and frustrate eligible registration to pre and primary schools
• Strong services chain in the district; that is in both Mwika (rural) and Rau, almost all families have access to health and other services. There three referral hospitals and a variety of health facilities, improved water supply, improved urban sanitation and good transport

Strengths for preparedness of schools preparedness include the following

• That the structure for the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training (MoEVT) is well established down to the community/village level that facilitate for schools to register and train eligible children

• Approved school curriculums are in place and implemented by all public schools and some private owned and managed schools.

• The cost of government school attendance is relative cheap and affordable compared to private schools, this provided enabling environment and influence care givers and communities to register and send their schools.

• There is strong collaboration between pre-schools and ECD centers and primary schools require that a prospective student for a primary school must have previously attended a preschool or ECD center. This promotes early education among children and shows the schools’ willingness to ensure ECD.

Links, continuity and relations between schools and families
• School committees, consisting of skilled professionals and parents, are the owners of the schools. Thus parents and care givers are involved in the schools management through schools committees’ discussions and deliberations.
• Given the history of Moshi district and the whole region of Kilimanjaro, parents and community are well above the normal expectations for education, commitments for children future success is high and press on parents and caregivers to ensure that children are registered for schooling when eligible

A number of challenges in relation to school and children preparedness include the following;
Challenges for preparedness of children include:

• Very few trained preschool teachers and the curriculum existing do match not link with teaching materials available
• Competing priorities at the household level, which makes ECD less important e.g.
• Families concentrate on fees and other requirements for older children attending secondary education because they know (and expect) for government to cater for primary education.
• Lack of clear mechanisms to regulate private owned ECD services and facilities
• Limited number of trained teachers in ECD services
Challenges for preparedness of schools include:

• The number of eligible children is greater than available facilities to cater for them.
• Limited number of trained teachers and services providers on ECD
• Quality of sanitation in primary schools especially in Mwika is generally poor and pose difficult and dangers for young children.
• Lack of clear mechanisms to regulate private owned schools and facilities, is likely to produce quality that do not comply to the national guidelines in terms of physical establishments and human resources

Among the major opportunities for improvement of ECD include;

• Private and FBO sector increasing interest and ambitions to invest in the expansion of the ECD services is one of the opportunities that open way for scaling up ECD services in Moshi.
• The Moshi district council is dedicated to improved ECD delivery. Over time, there are efforts to increase allocations on ECD coordination including enhancing inspection services and training for teachers
• With retirees who have accumulated experiences and skills, they can be used to support ECD activities in different ways including teaching and others especially in the rural areas.

This study recommends a number of actions that can be used to improve care and education for young children. These actions require involvements of multiple partners and they include;

• District level actions for improvement include the following;
– Work with other partners i.e. NGOs to establish ways to facilitate and scale up special programs for children with special needs, orphans, and disabilities and from poor families such that they can as well access quality services and care.
– Mobilize communities and the private sector to invest in the improvement and expansion of the ECD services and facilities.
– Mobilize more resources from possible sources and allocate additional to ECD improvements including monitoring resources utilizations to make sure that they are not diverted to other areas.
– Collect and compile appropriate data required by lower levels to prepare and plan. Data about projections of children for pre and primary enrolment can be useful for schools.
– Training and on-job training for teachers especially those for centers and lower classes and increase allocation of trained and qualified teachers to all schools according to needs.
– Improve coordination of ECD especially at the district level between education and social welfare departments.
CSOs and NGOs type of support include the following;

• Advocate for more allocations of trained teachers for ECD and primary schools that should be allocated appropriately such that each schools is allocated what it is needed.
• Support village and ward leaders plan for and prioritize for children with special needs.
• Mobilize parents to continue supporting expansion and improvement of ECD activities in the district through self help arrangements including donations.
• Mobilize parents to participate and/or contribute for the improvements in school infrastructure especially; classrooms, teachers houses, water and sanitation.

The findings from this situation analysis present a number of opportunities and challenges specific for KIWAKKUKI and ECD partners. Implies among other the following for KIWAKKUKI strategic priorities in the five years;

• Caregivers and parents are motivated to prepare their schooling; they work very hard and invest in future success.
• Majority of children from poor/low income families will go to schools with poor physical infrastructures and untrained/less motivated teachers.
• HIV/AIDS is posing a serious challenge, continue to produce orphans, who are likely to miss education and other services
• Economic hardships and competing demands frustrates ambitions to offer care and for children-early learning
• Increasing investments in early education i.e. centers and pre schools, increases chances and improves quality
• Many more untrained teachers to be used to fill the gap
• Participatory approaches to education are very limited, as teachers see themselves as the ones in control
• The home department for ECD at the district level- different departments deals with ECD in pieces
As far as ECD partners planning and priorities are concerned, they imply the following;
• Need for allocating more resources specific for ECD in the national budget. In regard to financial resources, a portion of the national budget needs to be directed towards the school systems because currently most preschools are private schools and families lacking the monetary means are left without a way to provide their children with education. All children need to have a way to attend primary schools, which means financial sponsoring from the government; such financial support should be channeled directly to MOEVT which needs to work and coordinate with other sector ministries i.e. MoHSW, PMO-RALG and MCDGC. This money must also be used to pay for the teachers’ salaries, training additional or ECD teachers or pay for on-job training for teachers already handling and teaching lower classes, buy training kits, and purchase medicine for the children (e.g. antiworm medication).

2. Advocate for a policy and guideline to support early childhood development in the country. The desired policy should clearly articulate roles, responsibilities, factors for success and additional research required to inform integrated and sustainable ECD in the Tanzania and risk mitigating measures.

3. Need to work with other sector ministries to address the gaps and chart out improvements necessary for ECD and related sectors in response to NIGPRS/MKUKUTA

4. Need for pushing for harmonized bi-laws and guidelines such that they do not create confusions and barriers rather contribute to improvements and establish accurate links between communities, schools and other services providers.
5. Need to advocate for national training strategy for ECD and primary school teachers so that to fill the gaps and improve the quality of teaching and support right away from pre through early primary school

Future ECD analysis should try to respond to the following questions;

• What is needed to prepare young children for success in school and life so as to respond to the family, community, ward and district expectations
• What does it mean for Family, Community, District and National level stakeholders to prepare schools that can support young children’s early success in school?
• Do we have a shared understanding about these issues – from family, community, District to national levels, and across different sectors?
• Are all young children well prepared for success in school and life

• How do young children themselves define preparedness for schools, what do they think about schools
• What do schools think about prepared children and what the success factors
• How district and national level players prepared to ensure that children are ready fir schools and schools are well prepared for children
• How can other stakeholders be involved in making sure that children are prepared for schools and schools are ready for children

• improved quality of care and early education at the family and community level and thereby ensure their readiness for school;

schools’ improved readiness for supporting young children’s access to and success in school

• However without the indicators for the Operational target for Early Childhood, ‘Increase in the number of young children prepared for school and schools prepared ready to care for children’ (NSGRP Cluster II), there is little data and information forthcoming in relation to progress, or the specific challenges and opportunities at national, district and community levels.

Research from elsewhere regarding children readiness for schools indicates that a number of factors affect and determine type and quality of education and care young children end up receiving. These studies point on issues of poverty, changing socio-cultural contexts, and HIV/AIDS, negatively impact on families capacity to care for and support their children’s overall development in the early years (0 – 8 ) when support is most critical. In reality
– poor families are often struggling to meet their young children’s basic needs;
– because of women’s increasing work pressures, traditional child-care support structures are dwindling , and sibling care-givers are now attending school,
– families have limited or no access to alternative child-care support arrangements which means that young children are often left alone during the day;

• Thus children from poor families and others most vulnerable children including orphans are more likely to enter school
– Undernourished and in poor health
– With limited cognitive and language abilities
– Lacking self-confidence
– Having had no preparation for school culture, social routines and language
• (Overview by ADED & CGECCD, 2006 Biennale of Education in Africa, in Gabon)

• There is consensus, based on a wealth of international research that there is a number of interacting dimensions affect a child’s early learning capacity from birth, and his/her readiness to learn and succeed in school. These include; physical well-being (including nutrition) and motor development, social and emotional development, language development, approaches to learning and cognition and general knowledge,

• Early childhood is a period of remarkable brain development that lays the foundation for all later learning. For disadvantaged children however, their circumstances often lead to poor nutrition and health, limited stimulation and early education, the impact of which goes unnoticed until they either fail to enter school, or drop out early and fail to succeed. Early intervention through parenting education, child care and support programmes for these children, including those with disabilities can significantly “...offset disadvantage and inequality, especially for children from poor families”
In Tanzanian Context, we know that there are significant challenges:-

• One out of three children are under weight, with rural children more likely to be malnourished than urban children
• The number of orphans is estimated to be 2,093,000, which is equivalent to 12% of all children (Census 2002)
• more than 95% of young children lack access to early stimulation and social protection programmes, care facilities or non-fee-paying pre-schools and parental education (UNICEF 2007)
• there is little or no data on the informal care and education of young children in family and community contexts
• Children’s access the health services remains limited ‘…eight out of ten children in Tanzania (who die), die at home and six of them without any contact with formal health services’ (URT, 2005)

• There is a lack of clear data and about children’s progress and success in the early years of primary school, and yet international research indicates that early success with basic literacy and numeracy skills is vital for ongoing success (Abadzi, 2006);
• Lack of trained pre-primary teachers – of 147,591 teachers in pre-primary school (2006) 17% of them are certified teachers (UNICEF 2007).
• Overcrowded classes impede teachers in adopting more child-friendly teaching methodologies (PHDR 2007).
• the school enrolment rate is high but so is the drop-out rate where as; only 0.3% of enrolments are disabled children, standard 1 drop-out is a high, 10.6% (UNESCO, 2007, GMR – 2004 data) and 22% of children fail to complete primary school
• Insufficient integration of ECD issues into social sector policies and guidelines regarding health, food and nutrition, water and sanitation, lobour, gender and women’s development, community development, adult education and culture.

Children preparedness for success in schools and life
• Insert picture
• Women cannot manage their workload and child care on their own family support roles
• Repetition rate for 2007/2008- 9.7% for std I & II
• Drop out rate 2007/2008 -7.5% for std IV
• Children preparedness for school is directly linked to their development and learning through Active learning
• Children learn better by exploring their potential through playing
Schools preparedness to for supporting young children’s early success
• Insert picture
• The poor quality of primary schools is significantly denying every child’s right to success
• Many school environments lack basic infrastructure
• Distance from formal primary schools deprive most of the children chances to enter school at appropriate age
• Satellite schools could be a best solution for these type of community
Schools preparedness to for supporting young children’s early success
• Insert picture
• Children not meeting minimum learning standards by grade 3 and 4 are most likely to repeat and ultimately fail school
• Most of schools are not friendly for children with disabilities
• Teacher interaction with children enhances learning
Links,continuity and relationships between diverse care and education environments for young children.
• Schools tend to dominate non formal care and education programmes
• Teachers lack the capacity to work with parents and the communities as partners in children learning
• Many children living in remote areas do not encounter Swahili until they enter school which makes their transitions to school dificult.
• Conflicting polices at guidelines at local level(Council)
• Exclusive teacher training for early primary classes
• Comprensive young children programs to build on cultural contexts(Curricullum,knowledge and practice)
• Children with disability isolated
• Need for increased awareness on how critical the early years are in children’s development at all levels.
Its our turn Now!
What best can we do to change the situation of young children in our areas?
Results from ECD Advocacy Meetting at Village & Ward level
Acrording to REPOA Report
• A human dimension that challenge all adults are:-
– Children wants to be listened
– Children want to be taught by teachers who like children and who make effort
– Children need to be heard(URT,MPEE,2007)