Governance, benchmarking and training tools for diversity positive ECEC provision

About the project

The Diversity+ project aims to develop governance, benchmarking, recognition and professionalization tools for Early childhood education and care (ECEC) professionals in order to understand and improve their current approach to inclusion and diversity.

Diversity+ will develop a complementary „top down“ approach which allows ECEC organizations to fully understand how different Diversity identities fit into their services, and so develop approaches which are fully inclusive to all. This will be achieved by calibrating the EU Quality Framework for ECEC in light of inclusiveness of provision. Diversity+ resources will create a structured and supported approach to quality inclusive service design. Partners will first develop a Diversity+ Charter which will set out the minimum requirements an ECEC organization needs to conform to in order to consider its provision Diversity positive. This will be achieved through desk and field research into current best practices and emergent trends across Europe. The Charter will then be used as the basis for an interactive digital Assessment tool which ECEC practitioners will be able to use to assess their current services and then track their improvement. This will be achieved through incentivized guidance and support, which will highlight how ECEC organizations can evidence and improve provisions. With sustainability and long-term impact in mind, the partners will produce European Quality Framework profile and training resources for the development of a Diversity Ambassador role. The Interactive Scenario serious game will help ECEC practitioners remove negative attitudes, bias and prejudices among kids (formed from about the age of 3), fostering empathy, compassion and awareness in relation to equality and diversity.

The project will demonstrate the value for ECEC organizations in dedicating permanent time and resource to inclusivity issues, something which will also help the projects´other tools continue to be used after Diversity+ itself comes to an end. Throughout these activities the project will look to engage with ECEC leaders, educators and assistants, HR managers, equality and diversity leads etc. from across Europe. This will be complemented by the involvement of Diversity advocacy groups and policy makers. Therefore, the project will produce highly transferable resources and will help Diversity+ achieve a wide impact on governance structures found across ECEC institutions, helping these organizations to become more welcoming and inclusive for a range of Diversity identities. This will see an improvement in the number of children from these groups engaging with ECEC services, helping to address the current underrepresentation of minority groups. As a result, more people from within these groups will develop key social skills, empathy, compassion, mutual respect and awareness in relation to equality and rights, something which will ultimately improve social inclusion long-term across the countries involved.