IT IS OF CONCERN THAT the professionalism of early childhood teachers (PECT) is nebulous in the eyes of the public, and parents’ perceptions of PECT may become an obstacle to the school–home partnership. This study explores teachers’ versus parents’ perceptions of the various characteristics of PECT to identify gaps among them and suggest ways to close these gaps. A mixed-methods research methodology was employed with 219 teacher and parent participants in Singapore. The quantitative findings indicate first that the teachers perceived PECT to be composed of two dimensions as two levels of capacity: fundamental pedagogical capacity and accumulated classroom studies of children. In contrast, the parents perceived PECT as a single dimension. Second, the gaps between teachers’ and parents’ perceptions were identified as four factor items of PECT, including characteristics of understanding a child’s needs, being able to create good relations with children, professional development and valuing of ethics. We discuss these findings and suggest how to reach coherent views on PECT and create better dynamics between the two parties.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology