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Issues in Educational Research, 2024, Vol 34(1), 219-234.
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Impacts of managerial systems on early educators' job satisfaction in five countries

Marg Rogers
University of New England, Australia

Khatuna Dolidze
Ilia State University, Georgia

Astrid Mus Rasmussen
Aarhus University, Denmark

Fabio Dovigo
Northumbria University, UK

Laura K. Doan
Thompson Rivers University, Canada

The work of early childhood educators is conducted in highly regulated environments in many Western nations. This is due to managerialism, the right arm of neoliberal-inspired policies. To explore educators' work within these contexts, our international study highlights the impacts of these systems on educators and the children they teach. This paper presents findings from five countries, namely, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Georgia and Italy. The results reveal the experiences of educators in these countries, impacted by neoliberal-inspired policies that are manifested in two different ways. They are dealing with increased managerial regulation or with the neglect of the sector in the pursuit of higher profits. Educators' job satisfaction is impacted when they perceive they are not able to adequately educate and support children due to these constraints. Using a critical neoliberal framework, we employed a mixed-method approach. The participants were educators with various roles and qualifications in a variety of service types. To analyse the numerical/closed answer data we used cross tabulation. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the qualitative data. Despite their difficulties, educators provided many ideas on the ways their government can better support their work so that they can focus on supporting children's learning through play. This study will be of interest to researchers, educators, policymakers and teacher educators.
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Authors: Dr Marg Rogers is a Senior Lecturer in the Early Childhood Education team within the School of Education at the University of New England, Australia. Marg researches marginalised voices within families and education especially in regional, rural and remote communities. Specifically, she researches ways to support the wellbeing of military, first responder and remote worker families and early childhood educators. Marg is a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Australian Government funded Manna Institute.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8407-7256
Email: marg.rogers@une.edu.au

Dr Khatuna Dolidze is associate professor and the program director of the early education BA program at Ilia State University, Georgia. She has initiated an innovative program dedicated to assisting children facing health challenges. Her work primarily revolves around addressing the diverse needs of vulnerable and marginalised children, particularly in the fields of health and education. She has been involved in the development of university and postgraduate training programs for early educators, as well as supporting their professional development after entering the profession.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0009-0009-9980-9371
Email: khatuna.dolidze.1@iliauni.edu.ge

Dr Astrid Mus Rasmussen is a postdoctoral research fellow and lecturer within the School of Communication and Culture, Department of German and Romance Languages at Aarhus University, Denmark. She researches in various areas, including education, pedagogy and differentiated instruction.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0009-0005-6982-0458
Email: geramr@edu.au.dk

Dr Fabio Dovigo is a Professor of Education in the Department of Social Work, Education and Community Wellbeing, Northumbria University, UK. His research interests are in the area of early childhood education and care and inclusive education. He is the holder of the UNESCO Chair "Supporting Early Years Care and Education" and a member (Networks' Representative) of the European Education Research Association Executive Board. Recently, he authored the WCECCE Global Thematic Report, Early childhood care and education teaching staff and educators: Challenges and opportunities (UNESCO, forthcoming).
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9684-618X
Email: fabio.dovigo@gmail.com

Dr Laura K. Doan is an Associate Professor in the School of Education at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada. Laura is the lead researcher in the Peer Mentoring Program for Early Childhood Educators in British Columbia (https://ecepeermentoring.trubox.ca/). This program of support for early childhood educators, involves peer mentoring through communities of practice (CoP) and is a partnership with the Early Childhood Educators of British Columbia, the professional association representing early childhood educators. Currently, there are 25 Peer Mentoring CoPs across the province of British Columbia, with close to 200 early childhood educators. The purpose of this program is to support the ongoing professional development needs of beginning and experienced early childhood educators.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9848-4095
Email: ldoan@tru.ca

Please cite as: Rogers, M., Dolidze, K., Mus Rasmussen, A., Dovigo, F. & Doan, L. K. (2024). Impacts of managerial systems on early educators' job satisfaction in five countries. Issues in Educational Research, 34(1), 219-234. http://www.iier.org.au/iier34/rogers.pdf

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Created 30 March 2024. Last update: 30 March 2024. Website: Roger Atkinson [rjatkinson@bigpond.com]