Early Childhood Education Journal

, Volume 46, Issue 3, pp 249–264 | Cite as

The Changing Landscape of Early Childhood Education: Implications for Policy and Practice

  • Michael J. Haslip
  • Dominic F. Gullo


Early childhood education is changing rapidly due to the dynamic nature of positive and negative trends affecting the profession. In this article, the changing landscape of early childhood education is discussed and analyzed. Both the positive and negative forces contributing to the changing landscape are examined. The focus of this discussion includes changing demographics, changes in early childhood curriculum and instruction, increased focus on accountability, advances in research that inform early childhood education, influences affecting teacher preparation and professional development, and global trends affecting early education and care. We relate these trends to the need for holistic systems-thinking, integrated curricula, child-centered pedagogical standards, deeper commitment to social justice and a corresponding moral vision capable of inspiring educational policy, practice and research in the midst of a competitive global economy and the commodification of early childhood programs and curricula. By discussing practical examples and research findings to illustrate current positive and negative trends, this paper serves as a meaningful resource for all stakeholders. Taking recent dynamics into account, we provide a vision for evaluating change and analyzing major trends. Both implications and responses to the changes in the early childhood landscape are discussed.


Early childhood education Curriculum and instruction Accountability Research Arts education Global trends Teacher preparation 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationDrexel UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.School of EducationDrexel UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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