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Integrated practice in the early years in Australia: The assumptions, omissions and contradictions of policy reform
journal contributionposted on 2016-01-01, 00:00 authored by K Macfarlane, Andrea NolanAndrea Nolan, J Cartmel
The aim of this article is to examine current national early years’ policy reform, which emphasises the importance of service integration, national quality standards and a quality knowledge base for educators concerning the provision of early childhood education and care. Using Queensland, Australia, as an example, a policy discourse analysis identifies two problematics of implementing current national policy – the early childhood education and care problematic and the integration problematic. The article argues that speedy implementation of a national policy in order to meet national targets has unintended consequences for the knowledge base of educators and the possibility of collaboration within service provision. Although government commitment in this area is evident, these consequences and the current difficulties surrounding integration are the result of the lack of a specific integration strategy, and government investment focussed on the development of an integrated workforce.