This competency area addresses early childhood educator competencies related to the role of the family in the care and education of the child, and the role of the community in providing resources and services to children, their families, and programs. It encompasses the knowledge, skills, and dispositions required to respond appropriately to all aspects of family diversity — such as race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, culture, family composition, religion, age, ability, and home language. Additionally, this competency area includes the ability to garner community support on behalf of children and families, whether at the local-program level or in the broader public realm (e.g., with other community resources and in school systems).
Key concepts include acknowledgment that children develop in the context of families and communities and that building relationships with families is an integral part of competent and professional early childhood practice. As such, this competency area is related to other competency areas, especially Culture, Diversity, and Equity; Dual-Language Development; and Child Development and Learning.
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