OECD Education Working Papers

This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected studies drawing on the work of the OECD Directorate for Education. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language (English or French) with a short summary available in the other.

English, French

Curriculum alignment and progression between early childhood education and care and primary school

A brief review and case studies

Curriculum plays an important role in ensuring continuity and progression from early childhood education and care (ECEC) to primary education. The alignment of curricula and standards across these settings shapes children’s early experiences with education systems, with implications for children’s relationships and engagement in both ECEC and primary school, as well as longer-term learning and well-being outcomes. Governments can achieve curricular continuity in various ways, ranging from high-level alignment of goals across multiple curriculum documents to full integration of the curriculum into a single document that covers both ECEC and primary school. The broader contexts of education systems, such as organisation and governance, the training of staff and teachers who work in these settings, matter for curricular continuity – and an integrated curriculum alone does not guarantee a continuous experience for children. International data and in-depth case studies from seven jurisdictions (Japan, Luxembourg, New Jersey [United States], New Zealand, Norway, Scotland [United Kingdom] and Victoria [Australia]) provide insights to these different approaches to curricular alignment.


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