Journal article

Early childhood professionals and children’s rights: Tensions and possibilities around the United Nations General Comment No. 7 on Children’s Rights

GM Naughton, P Hughes, K Smith

International Journal of Early Years Education | Published : 2007


Young children’s views are heard rarely in public debates and are often subordinated to adults’ views. This article examines how early childhood staff could support and enhance young children’s participation in public decision making. We argue that when early childhood staff use their expertise in young children’s physical, social and cognitive development to facilitate consultations with young children, they are likely to reinforce the view that young children are unable to form and express their own views. Whatever their intentions, this weakens the notion of children’s rights and undermines young children’s participation in public decision making. In contrast, when staff use their experti..

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