In 2000, the Philippines’ Republic Act No. 8980 called for a comprehensive ECCD policy and national system. The focus on ECCD has been advanced since then with the enactment of the Republic Act No. 10410 (or the Early Years Act of 2013) to recognize ages 0-8 as crucial developmental stages. The 0-4 age group is under the responsibility of the ECCD Council and the 5-8 age group is under the purview of the Department of Education.
The national ECCE system is a comprehensive follow-up plan on policy expectations which covers health, nutrition, early education and social protection for children from birth to age 4.
In 2008, the Early Learning Development Standards were developed by the ECCE. It forms the basis for the National Early Learning Framework and the National Early Learning Curriculum Learning Resource Packages.
1. Unsustainability of ECCD programs.
2. Difficulties in implementation of ECCD at national and local levels.
3. Health challenges, including malnutrition and immunization.
4. Lack focus on inclusive Early Education or special needs.
5. Challenges related to spending on ECCD.
1. Accessibility to ECCD program.
2. Focus on health, including nutrition, immunization, and feeding.
3. Increase spending in ECCD.
The ECCD council under Office of the President oversees the implementation of national ECD system.
Basic education is under the purview of the Department of Education; Protection of the social welfare of rights of Filipinos and social development promotion is under the responsibility of the Department of Social Welfare and Development; Provision of basic public health services is under the responsibility of Department of Health; and the policy-making and coordinating body for nutrition is managed by the UNION of Local Authorities of Philippine National Nutrition Council.
1. Community-based approach to reduce malnutrition
(by Save the Children)
Noteworthy aspects: Positive Deviance/Hearth (PD/Hearth) approach addresses malnutrition of children under two years old holistically in a 12-day nutrition program involving mothers. Program strengthens family practices in childcare, hygiene, feeding practices, health-seeking behavior and food security.
Achievements: This approach has successfully rehabilitated malnourished children by engaging communities to improve the nutrition and health of young children.
2. Healthy Start home-visiting program
(by Consuelo Foundation)
Noteworthy aspects: Partnership with the ECCD Council, Local Government Units, and local NGOs to provide support to pregnant women and families with newborns in highly diverse settings through intensive, community-based, home-visiting program.
Achievements: Benefitted 444 families across 14 sites in the Philippines and resulted in positive parenting behaviors and decreased environmental risks.
3. Early childhood teacher education program (ECTEP)
Noteworthy aspects: Initiative of the ECCD Council in the systematic professionalization of the ECCD service providers through 6 weeks of intensive training classes. Successful completion of 6 course of study will result in acquisition of 18 academic units as requisites for the Certificate Program on Early Childhood Education (ECE).
Achievements: Between 2014-2015, 214 teachers across cities and municipalities in the Philippines benefitted from the program with increased capacities in appropriate teaching strategies.
“Investing in early childhood is also investing for the future of the Philippines. Providing the means for zero (0) to eight (8) years old children to have equal access to basic Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) Services and continually improving the quality of its delivery with efficiency could eventually lead to its sustainability.” – ,