At the intersection of safety, ethics, mental health, and well-being: Disrupting the status quo, regulatory approach in Ontario

Statement prepared by Brooke Richardson, Adam Davies, and Michelle Jones and supported by the AECEO Board of Directors and staff

Who are we and how are we evolving as an organization?

One of the AECEO’s goals is to build the collective voice of Early Childhood Educators, who we trust to work creatively, collaboratively, and responsively with children, families, and communities. In doing this work, we understand educators, children, families, and communities as inevitably dependent and inextricably interdependent whereby responsive care relations are the foundation of good practice and quality care environments. While our mandate has evolved over time, one focus of our organization today is to critically engage with sociopolitical forces that undermine the work, value, and experiences of ECEs (and allied professionals) and advocate for change at the program, system, and public policy-level. We embrace our work as political, recognizing our responsibility to identify and challenge the chronic undervaluing of ECEs. But we also know we have much to learn. In the past few years, we have prioritized efforts to think with an anti-racist/anti-oppressive lens through ongoing engagement with Black, Indigenous, racialized, and newcomer educators, communities, children, and families. We are also working to establish stronger relationships with LGBTQIA2S communities to ensure we support gender and sexual minority educators, children, and families.

Why this statement?

This statement addresses two concerns. The first is the need to disclose certain mental or physical conditions or disorders on the College of Early Childhood Educator’s renewal form, and the second is the recent partnership between the CECE and People Connect, an online mental health self-assessment tool aimed at ECE’s mental health.

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