Reconceptualizing Our Work: The Connection Between ECE Students and Political Action

  • Michelle Jones
  • Brooke Richardson
  • Alana Powell
Keywords: student movements, Canadian child care movement, higher education, child care policy, early childhood educator


This paper takes the position that early childhood education students are an underutilized resource in strengthening the Canadian child care advocacy movement. The authors come to this topic as undergraduate and graduate students and a contract lecturer member in Ryerson’s early childhood studies program. Over the past year and a half, we have worked with our peers and colleagues to establish and lead the Ryerson Student Childcare Advocacy Association. Drawing on student movement and devaluation of care literature, this paper describes and explores our opportunities and experiences reconceptualizing the value of early childhood education and care that motivated us to become student leaders in the child care advocacy movement. Ultimately, we hope to both illustrate that students can and do make a meaningful difference in advocacy efforts and inspire and support postsecondary early childhood education programs to build the political capacity of students in the broader child care movement.

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