Pædagogers samfundsmæssige roller i forældresamarbejde

Schmidt, L. S. K.
Center for Pædagogik, Professionshøjskolen Absalon.


This study has two specific aims: to examine (1) what political requirements for toddlers' early learning mean for the collaboration between parents and ECEC teachers, and (2) what different positions parents and ECEC teachers establish in the collaboration, and what they expect from one another, particularly before are during school start.


The report's macro and micro analyses show that emphasis is on ideals about ECEC teachers and parents entering into partnerships to meet political goals for early learning, as well as ideals that ECEC teachers should have a more instructing and guiding role for parents, so that the home environment becomes a learning environment. According to the author, this pushes the ECEC teachers' perceived limits for what is private and what is public, and therefore challenges may arise if ECEC teachers are expected to cross these limits. The results also indicate that parents are categorised on the basis of culturally loaded norms and values, for example when they are viewed as "high" or "low" in terms of social and economic income groups, or when the learning environment at home is viewed as "strong" or "weak". The more a child's parents are viewed as from "lower" social classes, the more important it is to intervene and involve parents with regard to the child's home environment. The ECEC centre is therefore viewed as compensatory for the home.

The report's analyses of everyday life show that ECEC teachers and parents have to relate every day to many co-existing and competing considerations, practices and ways of thinking about children's learning and well-being. The analysis suggests that, in the two participating ECEC centres, an important element in the social obligations for parents is to be present in the children's everyday life, but the norms and values for what constitutes obligations are defined locally at the individual ECEC centre. In practice, ECEC teachers and parents often have different views on what is necessary with regard to social and formalised communities and practices at the ECEC centre, and what the children and the individual child need(s). For example, this is seen when ECEC teachers, leaders and parents have different views on which of the ECEC centre's formal objectives is most important in their practices and the children's everyday life. Or when differences arise between ECEC teachers and parents as to whether a child is ready for school, and the discussions that this brings about. The author also finds that relationships between the ECEC centre, the home and the school tend to be viewed as something that primarily includes collaboration and co-actions between adults, and this may mean that the children are reduced to mere objects for the collaboration.


The report combines macro and micro policy analyses of relationships between ECEC centre, home and school, with everyday life analyses of specific collaboration between ECEC teachers and parents in practice. The author draws on a number of different empirical data, including selected transnational and national documents with political requirements and initiatives for the ECEC area, as well as municipal and local documents with institutional guidelines for collaboration between ECEC teachers and parents, for example information folders for parents from ECEC centres. In addition, the data material consists of transcriptions from four participant-oriented seminars with a selection of leaders, ECEC teachers and members from parent committees who met across five ECEC centres from three different municipalities, as well as ethnographically inspired field visits and observations in two of the participating ECEC centres


Schmidt, L. S. K. (2017). Pædagogers samfundsmæssige roller i forældresamarbejde. Center for Pædagogik, Professionshøjskolen Absalon.

Financed by

The study was financed by the Danish Union of Early Childhood and Youth Educators’ (BUPL) research foundation.