Dr. Michal Perlman


Professor, University of Toronto and Director, Dr. R.G.N. Laidlaw Research Centre, University of Toronto



416-978-0596


Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE)


University of Toronto


252 Bloor Street West
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
M5S 1V6


Education of staff in preschool aged classrooms in child care centers and child outcomes: A meta-analysis and systematic review.


Journal article


Falenchuk O., Perlman M., McMullen E., Fletcher B., P. S. Shah
PLoS ONE, vol. 12(8), 2017

DOI: https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article

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APA
Falenchuk, O., Perlman, M., McMullen, E., Fletcher, B., & Shah, P. S. (2017). Education of staff in preschool aged classrooms in child care centers and child outcomes: A meta-analysis and systematic review. PLoS ONE, 12(8).

Chicago/Turabian
Falenchuk, O., M. Perlman, E. McMullen, B. Fletcher, and P. S. Shah. “Education of Staff in Preschool Aged Classrooms in Child Care Centers and Child Outcomes: A Meta-Analysis and Systematic Review.” PLoS ONE 12, no. 8 (2017).

MLA
Falenchuk, O., et al. “Education of Staff in Preschool Aged Classrooms in Child Care Centers and Child Outcomes: A Meta-Analysis and Systematic Review.” PLoS ONE, vol. 12, no. 8, 2017.


Abstract

Staff education is considered key to quality of early childhood education and care (ECEC) programs. However, findings about associations between staff education and children’s outcomes have been inconsistent. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of associations between ECEC staff education and child outcomes. Searches of Medline, PsycINFO, and ERIC, websites of large datasets and reference sections of all retrieved articles were conducted. Eligible studies provided a statistical link between staff education and child outcomes for preschool-aged children in ECEC programs. Titles, abstracts and paper reviews as well as all data extraction were conducted by two independent raters. Of the 823 studies reviewed for eligibility, 39 met our inclusion criteria. Research in this area is observational in nature and subject to the inherent biases of that research design. Results from our systematic review were hampered by heterogeneity in how staff education was defined, variability in whose education was measured and the child outcomes that were assessed. However, overall the qualitative summary indicates that associations between staff education and childhood outcomes are non-existent to very borderline positive. In our meta-analysis of more homogeneous studies we identified certain positive, albeit very weak, associations between staff education and children’s language outcomes (specifically, vocabulary and letter word identification) and no significant association with a mathematics outcome (WJ Applied Problems). Thus, our findings suggest that within the range of education levels found in the existing literature, education is not a key driver of child outcomes. However, since we only explored levels of education that were reported in the literature, our findings cannot be used to argue for lowering education standards in ECEC settings.


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