1 University of Rijeka, Faculty of Teacher Education (CROATIA)
2 Kindergarten Rijeka (CROATIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2023 Proceedings
Publication year: 2023
Pages: 7518-7526
ISBN: 978-84-09-49026-4
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2023.2054
Conference name: 17th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2023
Location: Valencia, Spain
The contemporary Ecological and Dynamic model of transition emphasizes the importance of a variety of different aspects when we talk about the quality of transition in preschool children. One of the most important aspects is the quality of parents' collaboration with the preschool during the child's transition from family to kindergarten or from kindergarten to primary school, as well as parents' collaboration with the local community. The quality of this cooperation is based on open and direct communication, which is a prerequisite for creating quality and facilitating transition practices. On this basis, educators in kindergartens strive to develop and improve daily the cooperation with parents of children enrolled in the educational group in which they work. On the other hand, educational policies are expected to facilitate the above-mentioned communication and practices that provide the necessary support for modern parenting in times of early transition. In this context, a study was conducted to investigate the quality of parents' collaboration with the kindergarten and the local community during the children's transition period. A total of 157 caregivers (131 mothers) of children enrolled in three institutions of the Rijeka Kindergarten in Rijeka, Croatia, participated. The indirect sample consisted of 157 children (77 girls). The mean age of parents was M = 37.18 years (between 23 and 60 years) and the mean age of children was M = 4.71 (between 1 and 7 years). After giving their consent to participate in the study, the parents were instructed to rate their satisfaction with the collaboration with the educators during the children's settling-in period, as well as the quality of the collaboration with the entire early and preschool education institution and the local community. For this purpose, two scales were used, one with 40 and the other with 24 items with satisfactory metric properties, on which parents provided their assessments on a 5-point Likert scale (from 1 = disagree to 5 = agree). The majority of parents indicated that there were no difficulties during the transition and that they were satisfied with the adjustment in kindergarten itself. They expressed increased satisfaction with the collaboration with the kindergarten (M = 3.97) and the community as a whole (M = 3.69). Notwithstanding the noted high satisfaction with collaboration, additional analysis of parents' responses to individual items indicated that there is some space for improvement in existing collaboration. The results obtained reiterate the importance of creating a positive atmosphere and quality practice in the kindergarten during the transition, which focuses on developing and improving the quality of cooperation between parents and educators, as well as the kindergarten and the community as a whole, taking into account the specific cultural context.
Cooperation, kindergarten, local community, parents, preschool children, transitions.