The history of the Department

The Department of Early Childhood Education and Care of the University of West Attica can be considered as the continuation of the Department of Early Childhood Education of The Technological Educational Institute (TEI) of Athens, Greece and the successor of the School of Infant-Toddler Carers “Princess Sophia”, established at the same period with the “Mitera” Care Centre for Infants in 1955. Since then, the School has been located in the premises of the “Mitera” Care Centre for Infants and collaborated closely with it. When the School was established, female high – school graduates were eligible to enroll, following their successful completion of both oral and written exams. The course involved three years of attendance (on a full twelve-month basis) and included compulsory theoretical training and Practicum with preschool children.

 

In 1977 the School was renamed “School of Early Childhood Education and Care”, under the auspices of «Mitera» and remained such until 1984 when it was  incorporated it, without fundamental changes in the curriculum, to the Faculty of Health and Caring Sciences of the Technological Educational Institute (TEI) of Athens, according to the provisions of the Law 1404/83. In 2007 the Department was renamed “Department of Early Childhood Education” while later, in 2018, it became an autonomous department under the name “Department of Early Childhood Education and Care” belonging to the School of Administrative, Economics and Social Sciences according to Law 4521 (Government Gazette 38/2.3.2018). In 2021 the Department has been relocated to the central premises in the University of West Attica, Campus 1.

 

The academic development of the Department over the last three decades has been subjected to vital institutional changes such as the establishment of the four-year attendance, the increase in the academic qualifications required for Faculty Staff recruitment, the modernization of the undergraduate program, the flourishing development of the exchange programs with tertiary Education Departments in the E.U. and the subsequent increase in the academic standards of the permanent Faculty staff. Additionally, the academic profile has been upgraded with the recent establishment of an Interdepartmental Postgraduate Program of Studies organized by the Undergraduate Department of Early Childhood Education and Care and the Department of Biomedical Sciences of the University of West Attica.