Understanding Links Between Work Climate and Early Care and Education Classroom Quality

Research BriefEarly ChildhoodDec 15 2020

Work climate is a broad term that encompasses all facets of the work environment, other than training and education, that support or detract from employees’ ability to succeed (Whitebook, McLean, Austin, & Edwards, 2018). In this brief, we use a sample of center-based child care classrooms in Georgia to examine how different aspects that affect work climate (e.g., wages, employee benefits, teacher turnover, children per teacher, and educator stress and commitment) are related to classroom quality. More fully understanding this relationship could help states collect information about work climate as part of their own quality improvement efforts.

Research questions

In this brief, we address the following research questions in center-based child care classrooms for preschoolers and toddlers.

  • Research Question 1 (RQ1): How are various aspects of the work climate (e.g., wages, benefits, teacher stress, teacher commitment, children per teacher) and teacher characteristics related to one another?
  • Research Question 2 (RQ2): How are work climate and teacher characteristics related to observed teacher-child interactions?

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