The ideal early childhood teacher?

Discursive constructions of professionalism in ECEC policy in Aotearoa




ECEC policy, critical discourse analysis, teacher identities, professionalism


In policy, teachers are persistently positioned as central to improving the quality of early childhood education and care (ECEC). They are frequently the targets for policy reform that proactively seeks to shape teaching priorities and practices. The constructions of teachers in policy shape notions of ideal professional identities, opening up spaces for certain identities and closing spaces for others. This critical discourse analysis of seven key ECEC policy texts assembles a range of discourses to identify and critically examine two prevalent and distinct 'ideal' professional identities for early childhood teachers: The Professional and The Kaiako.


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Author Biography

Kiri Gould, University of Auckland

Kiri Gould is a lecturer at the School of Education and Social Work at Waipapa Taumata Rau University of Auckland. Through her scholarship she is committed to supporting the wellbeing and sustainability of an equitable ECE sector. Her work examines problematic discourses of professionalism, ECE teacher and leader identities, educational policies and seeks to re-envision alternative ways of being and doing in ECE.


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