[Child and Family Care]
A Study on the Improvement of the Delivery System of Public-run Childcare Service: Focusing on the Establishment of the Broad Area Support Center
Kang Eunae, Ryu Im Lyang
Research Fellow, Seoul Foundation of Women and Family
The study was conducted for the purpose of finding a method to establish the “Childcare Broad Area Support Center”, which is scheduled to be set up in 2022, and to improve the quality of childcare services. In accordance with the revision of the Child Care Support Act, from 2022, each local government must initiate the “Childcare Broad Area Support Center”, hire childcarers from all provinces and cities under its jurisdiction, and sign a labor contract.
Currently, a childcarer is hired by service providers consigned by each district, and service providers are linking childcarers to families who want to use the childcare program. However, as the recruitment and labor management of childcarer are difficult, and there is an increasing need to strengthen the qualification manage of childcarers, the central government amended the Child Care Support Act in 2020 in order to recruit childcarers at the Broad Area Support Center to perform unified labor management and strengthen the qualification manage of childcarers.
As the recruitment of childcarer, which is the key personnel of public run childcare service, will derive changes the delivery role of the newly established Childcare Broad Area Support Center, it is necessary to review the current operation of childcare support programs and preemptively review the establishment method, roles, and functions of the Childcare Broad Area Support Center to address the amendment of the law. To this end, the study reviewed the operation status of the Seoul metropolitan government’s childcare support programs, interviewed workers and experts in the childcare support program, and collected opinions on the role and function of the Broad Area Support Center.
As a result, interview participants pointed out a need for a command center in order to manage overall childcare support projects. Childcare support projects are operated following the guidelines of the central government, but the guidelines change frequently and are often unclear. In such cases, it is necessary to clearly deliver the guidelines and have a responsible body, but existing reginal base organizations have limitations in carrying out such role. Therefore, when the Broad Area Support Center is established, it should act as a command center for the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s childcare support program, and policies should be developed and implemented to improve the quality of childcare services.
It is mandatory to review the possible impact regarding related laws. Even if the Broad Area Support Center employs childcarers collectively, the service providing institute must link childcarer with the household. As this may conflict with other laws such as the Labor Standards Law, guidelines from the central government are needed to resolve such issues. As childcare services are regional-based services, verification of the effectiveness of collectively recruiting from the Broad Area Support Center is also required in the long term.
In order to improve the quality of childcare services, the Childcare Broad Area Support Center is not only responsible for hiring and labor managing of childcarer, but also play the role of educational support including set up a business plan through identification and analysis of the operation of the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s childcare support project, establishing a childcare supply and demand plan, strengthening childcarer capabilities and improving their working conditions, improvement of monitoring and strengthening the competence of workforce. Thus, a proper organization and workforce should be guaranteed, and it is imperative to hire a professional workforce with an adequate field experience.
*Keyword : public-run childcare service, The Child Care Support Act, Childcare Broad Area Support
Center, improve the quality of childcare services