Advantages And Disadvantages Of Early Education

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Educational Disadvantage is a multidimensional problem that requires intervention on a number of fronts. (REF). It is a broad term that can be defined in a number of ways. It is defined by the Education Act (DES, 1998b:32) and the Ready To Learn – White Paper on Early Childhood Education as ‘The impediments to education arising from social or economic disadvantage which prevent students from deriving appropriate benefit from education. It refers to low levels of participation and achievement in the formal education system. (REF). Children do not begin schools with equal chances of benefiting from it. (Norah Gibbons, Director of Advocacy, Barnardos).

Urie Bronfenbrenner (YEAR) developed the ecological systems theory to explain how everything in a child’s environment affects how the child grows and develops. The child’s
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People who leave education early are at disadvantage, as education and related qualifications determine to a large extent the life chances of people. (REF). There is a higher rete of school dropout in disadvantaged areas. Literacy and numeracy levels in disadvantaged areas are also a cause for concern, with 1 in 3 children having serious difficulties. These standards have not changed since the 1980’s. Children from more advantaged backgrounds are more likely to participate in extra-curricular activities.

Efforts to establish inclusive practice have been in made in Ireland form the 1990’s onwards. Ireland signed the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) in 1992. The UNCRC is a legally binding agreement which sets out the rights of all children regardless of race, religion and abilities. The Education Act 2000 was introduced to ensure that each child attends a recognised school where they can participate fully in school life. The National Education Board (NEWB) was established under this act.
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