Preschoolers’ Parents Navigate Control and Responsibility

University essay from Malmö universitet/Fakulteten för lärande och samhälle (LS)

Abstract: In this paper, I address a situation faced by preschool parents in their interaction with preschool practitioners. In interviews with parents, it became apparent that parents sensed a loss of control over how their children were being raised once they started preschool. The parents in the interviews acknowledge their responsibility regarding how their children are brought up and so struggle to come to terms with this lack of control and try to find solutions. I have looked into previous research as well as policy documents to identify the level of responsibility and control had by preschool institutions and the state and have found that parents are in a position where they are made to have less control but still are held responsible, by themselves and others. An analysis using narrative theory has made more clear the ways in which parents navigate the issue of loss of control versus responsibility. The purpose of the paper is to shed light on a situation faced by parents due to the responsibility attributed to them and the lack of control they have over upbringing, and can help practitioners at preschools be more aware of their role in this and of parents’ struggles.

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