Early Childhood Development
ECD is the period of life comprised from gestation until 5 years of age, during which the basis for children’s cognitive, language, motor and socio-emotional development is laid. These are crucial years to ensure adequate learning and health conditions.
Early years are a unique window of opportunity for investing in human capital. Evidence shows that early life experiences and interventions have a lasting effect throughout life. Therefore, policy interventions to foster development in this period favor equality and create economic benefits far larger than their costs.
Early Childhood Development in LAC
The region has made major strides. These include:
- Expanding childcare service coverage both in centers and programs working with families.
- Prioritizing childhood development on the political agenda; this involves rising public spending for this segment of the population, strengthening the institutions in charge, and developing regulatory and legal frameworks.
- Strengthening coordination and harmonization among different government sectors and levels, taking an integral perspective of the services.
- Designing initiatives to generate information and evidence for the decision-making process.