Early Ed Leadership & Innovation

We train frontline early educators and child care business owners in entrepreneurial leadership, and research ways to support them at scale

April 12, 2022
by IEELI
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New Study Finds What Drives Wage Gaps Among Early Educators in Massachusetts

A new study found that teachers’ educational attainment and current teaching positions explained wage gaps among a statewide representative sample of ECE center educators in Massachusetts. The study also found that center educators who self-identified as Black earned higher hourly wages than their White, Hispanic/Latinx, and other-race counterparts with similar characteristics. Hispanic/Latinx educators earned wages comparable with their White counterparts.

“Teachers with a bachelor’s or higher degrees earned higher wages than those with lower educational attainment, and being a lead teacher instead of an assistant teacher was also associated with higher wages,” said study author Anne Douglass, PhD, Professor of Early Care and Education at UMass Boston and the founding executive director of the Institute for Early Education Leadership and Innovation. “The strong association between educational attainment and hourly wages underscores the importance of implementing intentional strategies to create equitable opportunities for pursuing higher education degrees for all early educators.”

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February 25, 2022
by IEELI
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New Study Finds That Early Educators Trained in Leading for Change Develop Entrepreneurial Mindset and Lead for Change in the Workplace

A study published in the International Journal of Child Care and Education Policy found that early educators who participated in a relational-entrepreneurial leadership development program were likely to lead for change in curriculum improvement, family engagement, and relationship building after completing their training. It is one of the first empirical studies to examine whether relational-entrepreneurial leadership development training increases early educators’ capacity to lead for change and it contributes new knowledge to the emerging literature on early educator leadership development. Findings from the study, which was designed and authored by researchers at the Institute for Early Education Leadership and Innovation at UMass Boston, are relevant to current debate among early educators, parents, and policymakers about how to make affordable, high quality early care and education accessible to all families. Continue Reading →

May 2, 2019
by IEELI
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Research Summary: Mobilizing Leadership with the Breakthrough Series Collaborative

In her 2017 book, Leading for Change in Early Care and Education: Cultivating Leadership From Within (Teachers College Press), Professor Anne Douglass offers a framework for leadership in early care and education that is inclusive, collaborative, and purpose-driven and that defines a leader as someone who can influence and inspire change from within the field. In Chapter Seven, Douglass examines the Breakthrough Series Collaborative (BSC) model for organizational change. BSCs have supported quality improvement in the health, child trauma, and child welfare fields, but have not yet been widely tested in ECE. In describing the results of an 18-month pilot program of the model in ECE settings, she shows how it offers a concrete strategy for facilitating individual and organizational change within ECE by mobilizing leadership from all levels. Continue Reading →

April 18, 2019
by IEELI
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Research Summary: Pathways to Leadership for Early Educators

In “Redefining Leadership: Lessons from an Early Education Leadership Development Initiative,” published in the Early Childhood Education Journal, Professor Anne Douglass shows that a leadership development program can change the mindset of experienced early educators so they see themselves as innovators and influencers. This first-of-its-kind study followed 43 early educators as they went through a relational and entrepreneurial leadership development program. The results demonstrate that these educators, who had an average of 18 years’ experience in early childhood education (ECE) but who did not self-identify as leaders, subsequently took on leadership roles within the field, bringing new ideas and innovation to their practice. Continue Reading →

December 3, 2018
by IEELI
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New State Early Care and Education Workforce Study Report Released

The Institute for Early Education Leadership and Innovation (IEELI) at UMass Boston issued a report on the early education and care (ECE) workforce in Massachusetts demonstrating that many educators face low pay and barriers to their professional development. The data presented in the report serves as the foundation for a major statewide study of educators slated to be launched in 2019—- after nearly fifteen years since the last comprehensive report on the workforce was completed. Continue Reading →

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