Conference: No Quality without Equality in ECEC (DECET)

International Conference on Diversity, Equality and Social Justice in Early Childhood

4 and 5 June 2015, Newman University, Birmingham, UK
Full Conference Fee: £180 - visit Newman estore
(£90 Reduced fee  for students, voluntary organisations and unemployed individuals).
Submission of papers - Closed.

Keynote Speakers

Louise Derman-Sparks, Los Angeles, CA
Deepa Grover, UNICEF Geneva
Janneka Plantenga, Netherlands

Peter Tatchell, Human Rights Activist, UK

‘Quality’ continues to be the defining term for early childhood education and care. There is now a broad consensus among policy makers, practitioners and researchers that ‘access to universally available, high-quality inclusive ECEC services is beneficial for all’ (to quote a high profile policy document published by the EU Commission). The importance given to ‘quality’ in early childhood has been emphasised by the proposal for a European Quality Framework, launched by the EU Commission in 2014. But what constitutes ‘quality’ in relation to the experiences of young children, their families and communities in and with early childhood institutions and programmes remains a highly contested matter. Questions of how to develop, support, maintain and value quality are at the centre of controversial debate. There is no shortage of definitions – but they all depend on the context, the vantage point and the vested interests of those who are in a position to define.

As DECET, the international network that works for diversity, equality and social justice in early childhood, our position is clear: Firstly, questions of ‘quality’ are first and foremost connected to the rights of all children to grow up and live free of discrimination. Secondly, all means all – regardless of a child’s or their family’s race, ethnicity, colour, sex, gender, language, belief, religion, nationality, legal status, economic status or ability.


The international conference, jointly hosted by DECET and Newman University, is a forum for practitioners, trainers, academics, policy makers and activists to explore crucial questions we believe should sit at the very centre of any discussion about ‘quality’ in early childhood:

How to achieve quality for all?

Quality for whom – whose quality?

Quality with whom?

For further information :

To visit our e-shop to book a place on the conference please click here



Calls for Proposals opened in January 2015. Deadline for proposals 20th March 2015.

A proposal can be submitted for:

1)        Quality for All? How can we ensure all children and families have access to the services they need? How to ensure diversity, equality and social justice are constituting elements of all early childhood services?

2)        Quality for whom – whose quality? How to ensure that defining and developing and evaluating ‘quality’ is a democratic, participatory process that involves all stakeholders – including (but not limited to) children, families, diverse communities, practitioners, policy makers, researchers?

3)        Quality with whom? How to support democratic educators in a competent system?

A proposal can be submitted as

  • Individual paper presentation: 30 minutes including discussion.
    Individual papers will be grouped into larger symposia by theme.
  • Self-organised symposium: groups may propose to organise 3 papers and a moderator around a common theme as a full session of 90 minutes including discussion. For self-organised symposia, please submit an outline of the proposed session and one abstract for each of the papers.
  • Poster presentation: selected posters will be displayed; there will be opportunities for conference participants to interact with poster presenters.

pdf  Conference Programme
Last updated: 26 May 2015

pdf  Conference Schedule of Sessions/Papers
Last updated: 21 May 2015

pdf  DECET Conference Flyer
Last updated: 05 February 2015

pdf  Hotel Links
Last updated: 19 March 2015

docx  Submission of proposals and abstract form Please submit proposals for presentations to:
Last updated: 05 March 2015

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