Is Free Early Childhood Education a Sustainable Solution? Evidence from the Case Study of Nanjing

Yu Qian, Xiurong Gu, Hui Li
2022 Sustainability  
This case study adopted a mixed methods approach to understanding how and why the free early childhood education (ECE) policy in Nanjing, China, was formulated, implemented, and failed, using the "policy cycle" framework. Many countries have implemented the free ECE policy to solve affordability and accessibility problems without considering policy sustainability; thus, they have to discontinue the policy. Nanjing is no exception. Altogether 232 kindergarten principals and teaching/research
more » ... f were randomly sampled and surveyed, and 5 kindergarten principals and 5 teaching/researcher staff were interviewed. The results indicated that there were many obstacles to the policy's sustainability, including conflict of interest, inefficient policy implementation, insufficient funding, and more social inequality issues. Additionally, the policymakers made mistakes in the five domains of the policy cycle: the context of influence, the context of policy text production, the context of practice, the context of outcomes, and the context of political strategy. Finally, the three important lessons for a more sustainable policy decision process are discussed.
doi:10.3390/su14116586 fatcat:qqmamcimwnaqrgnuiwprs624gu