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Examining the tensions between cultural models of care in family childcare and quality rating improvement systems


Although family child care (FCC) programs have been increasingly targeted by quality improvement efforts such as Quality Improvement Rating Systems, research suggests that these efforts often fail to align QRIS supports with the unique needs and interests of this population. The aim of this study was to examine the aspirations, strengths, challenges, and professional development needs of FCC providers who identify as immigrants or refugees living in a low-income, multi-ethnic urban community in California in order to design a professional development program that meets the criteria of our county’s QRIS while at the same time honoring the community context. Results from focus groups indicate that providers described their work in terms that reflected cultural models of care that were often incongruent with definitions of quality embodied by our county’s QRIS. Data provides empirical support for the continued examination of cultural models of care as a way to define quality in FCC settings and findings are presented via a multi-level theoretical frame that draws attention to the macrosystemic contexts of racism, poverty, the immigrant and refugee experience, and the universal standards of quality embodied by QRIS. (author abstract)

Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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