|Journal Article - Potchefstroom Electronic Law Journal
|Clearing the red tape – Towards a balanced regulatory framework for early childhood development
The state of early childhood development (ECD) provisioning in South Africa is dire. An onerous regulatory regime is one factor
contributing to this crisis. Instead of a developmental and enabling framework, the regulatory landscape is convoluted and
overly burdensome. This in turn frustrates the realisation of the rights of children. The author argues that regulatory reform in
this context is not only desirable but constitutionally required. The article begins by providing an overview of the evolution of
the ECD regulatory landscape in South Africa with a particular focus on health and safety regulation. A shift from under-regulation in the pre-constitutional era to over-regulation in the constitutional era is identified. The author proceeds to argue that South Africa's current state of affairs is animated in part by a failure to articulate the full set of interests that should inform a balanced ECD regulatory regime. Pathways towards a more coherent and coordinated regulatory framework for ECD health and safety standards are suggested. The proposed reforms, albeit limited, have the potential to offer immediate relief to both under-resourced providers and overburdened administrators.
|South Africa - Early Childhood Development Census 2021