THE NEED FOR A MINIMAL ACCREDITATION MODEL TO ADVANCE AND MANAGE EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION IN BOTSWANA: A PROPOSAL FOR A DEBATE

Naledi Binnie Mswela

Abstract


Universally, educational reforms are meant to positively impact a country. Botswana has over the years been introducing innovations through government funding of education especially basic education. Reforms have been focused on each level of education including early childhood education (ECE). While a move to develop early childhood education was slow as is started some few years back (2012) with the introduction of the first policy on early childhood education, the government should be applauded for taking this bold step signaling an international move to advance and manage this level of education. Experience has indicated that early childhood programs are mostly operated by none government providers like religious group, private organization and individuals. However, there is nothing in place to regulate their provision in terms of an accreditation model. The absence of such a model can defeat the very efforts to improve, expand and support provision of ECE. This paper argues for the introduction of a minimal accreditation model taking into consideration the nature of provision and the fresh interest that the government has given to ECE. It is suggested that a minimal model can have tremendously benefits for Botswana. It can shape a remarkable trend of regular review, regulate issuance of certificate to practice, formation of national accreditation body, development of standards for compliance and coordinate different provisions. Unquestionably, these milestones would not be achieved with unregulated practices that currently characterize ECE provision in Botswana. The paper support efforts for relevant provision of ECE which can spark renewed interests by all stakeholders including parents, communities and nation at large. 

 

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early childhood education, accreditation, minimal accreditation model, government providers, none-government providers

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