Academic journal article Journal of Comparative Family Studies

TIME TO CARE; Redesigning Child Care to Promote Education. Support Families, and Build Communities

Academic journal article Journal of Comparative Family Studies

TIME TO CARE; Redesigning Child Care to Promote Education. Support Families, and Build Communities

Article excerpt

LOMBARDI, Joan, TIME TO CARE; Redesigning Child Care to Promote Education. Support Families, and Build Communities. Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press, 2003, 232pp., $18.95 softcover.

As many will read in the title of this book, it argues in favor of a significant expansion of the actual government effort towards child care. However, Joan Lombardi does a lot more than that: she offers a plan ibr change, that is both grounded in American tradition and in recent evidence from science and care practice.

In a first chapter the author goes into the need to reframe child care. She explains how market forces alone will not work and links good quality child care to traditional values like family and education for all. The second chapter reviews the history of US public thinking about child care and describes public policy in this field throughout the twentieth century.

In the third chapter, Joan Lombardi stresses the importance of child care from an educational point of view. Child care is mostly seen as a solution for working parents, but growing evidence points at the crucial role of a 'good start in life', to which child care may prove indispensable for many children. To education and care, the author adds a third dimension: the link to local communities. Joan Lombardi shows how local communities can benefit from well organized after-school initiatives. As a consequence, a partnership between local communities and schools seems highly indicated, which in turn may blur the boundaries between care and education. …

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