Early Childhood Equity
Welcome to the Western Educational Equity Assistance Center at the Metropolitan State University of Denver. We are glad that you have clicked on our Early Childhood Equity webpage. This resource is dedicated to teachers, administrators, school staff, family members, community stakeholders, and others who have an active role or an interest in the education of young children. ECE encompasses those impressionable and formative years from birth to age eight, and in public education from pre-Kindergarten through Third Grade.
Children recognize differences very early in life. Attitude formation towards diversity begins to form based upon the actions and reactions which children see in the adults around them. Educators have the privilege of helping young children learn to value the multicultural world in which they live. They also have the responsibility of ensuring that all children are treated equitably in school settings regardless of race, gender, national origin, cultural ethnicity, religion, social class, special needs, or any of the myriad other areas of diversity that comprise our society.
Patricia G. Ramsey, Chair of Psychology and Education, Mount Holyoke College, has set forth certain goals for early childhood multicultural education which correlate with equity. They are “Encouraging children to develop positive and realistic identities that embody their race, culture, gender, and abilities as well as their personal, family, and social histories” and “Broadening children's perspectives so that they learn to recognize, respect, and appreciate commonalities and differences among people in their communities, countries, and the world and develop a sense of solidarity with all people…”
On this site we want to present you with avenues for strengthening the all-important relationship between the home, the school, and the community. We recognize that the child’s parents/ grandparents/guardians are the first and ongoing teachers, and that family engagement is an integral component in the young child’s academic success. Valuing the cultural heritage of the home and community is a vital part of this process. In the Region IV Western Educational Equity Assistance Center, we hope to open new perspectives and insights into strategies and to provide resources for early childhood educators as they go about their very important work.
Janet Gonzalez-Mena has asked the question: “Who is raising America’s children?” She then gives this answer: “We all are … If children are to be raised to be healthy, productive, contributing members of society, the job of child-rearing takes more than just the family they belong to. Nurturing and protection of the child must be viewed in terms of community, neighborhoods, schools, and child care, all of which are influenced by culture …”
The staff of the Region IV WEEAC concurs with this view and is committed to helping all those involved with the education of young children. To request our free services within any of the 13 states and three territories within our region, simply click on the tab on the left sidebar of this page. We look forward to working with you.