The Pillar establishes that all children have the right to good quality ECEC. ECEC is understood as any regulated arrangement that provides education and care for children from birth to compulsory primary school age - regardless of the setting, funding, opening hours or programme content - and includes centre and family-based day-care; privately and publicly funded provision; pre-school and pre-primary provision.(93)
Furthermore, the Pillar highlights the quality aspects of ECEC, understood as combining aspects related to access, workforce, curriculum, monitoring, evaluation and governance. Universally available and good quality ECEC is beneficial for all children and particularly those from a disadvantaged background.
The provisions of the Pillar set a right for children to be protected from poverty, meaning that every child shall have access to comprehensive and integrated measures as set out in the 2013 European Commission Recommendation on investing in children. Prevention of poverty and social exclusion is most effectively achieved through integrated strategies. The targeted measures should, for instance, comprise access to adequate resources, a combination of cash and in-kind benefits allowing children to enjoy adequate living standards, access to affordable quality services in the area of education, health, housing, family support and promotion of family-based and community care, as well as legal protection and support for children to participate in decision-making that affects their lives.
In addition, Principle 11b gives children from disadvantaged backgrounds (such as Roma children, some migrant or ethnic minority children, children with special needs or disabilities, children in alternative care and street children, children of imprisoned parents, as well as children within households at particular risk of poverty) the right to specific measures – namely reinforced and targeted support - with a view to ensure their equitable access to and enjoyment of social rights.