Attitudes and Actions of Parents and Professionals
Home / Research / Themes / Professionalization / Attitudes and Actions of Parents and Professionals

Head and Coordination



Bertelsmann Stiftung - Logo




08/2015 – 08/2018

Project Attitudes and Actions of Parents and Professionals

Children between Opportunities and Barriers. How Parents, Children, Preschools, and Schools Interact. Examining the Attitudes, Beliefs, and Actions of Parents and Professionals

The study examines from an educational and socio-scientific perspective the attitudes held by parents and educators at early childhood education and care (ECEC) facilities and primary schools, as well as their underlying beliefs and interactions. The focus is on processes found at the intersection of families and educational institutions that give rise to, reinforce or reduce educational inequalities.

Success or failure in educational institutions, access to ECEC centers and timely transitions to primary school are key factors determining social participation and life opportunities in Germany. Yet a punctual transition from an ECEC facility to primary school, for example, does not depend solely on children’s specific (preexisting) competencies, but reflects in unequal measure differences such as social background and ethnic heritage. These differences and the unequal treatment arising from them have a significant impact – both in terms of a child’s access to educational institutions and what he or she experiences within them.

This study examines the phenomenon of educational inequality from both an educational and a socio-scientific perspective by focusing on teachers and educational practitioners, on the one hand, and on mothers and fathers, on the other hand. It explores the attitudes and beliefs underlying their involvement, as well as their (joint) activities within the relevant institutions. One key issue is the degree to which social factors such as cultural heritage, immigration status and gender influence parents’ and professionals’ attitudes and immediate interactions. The study also deconstructs the often invisible processes and mechanisms present in ECEC facilities and primary schools that give rise to or reinforce social inequalities.

Selected Publications

Betz, T. (2015). The ideal of educational partnerships - A critique of the current debate on cooperation between ECEC centers, primary schools an families. Expertise on behalf of the Bertelsmann Stiftung. Gütersloh: Bertelsmann Stiftung.

Betz, T., Bischoff, S., Eunicke, N., Kayser, L. B., & Zink, K.  (2017). Partner auf Augenhöhe? Forschungsbefunde zur Zusammenarbeit von Familien, Kitas und Schulen mit Blick auf Bildungschancen. Gütersloh: BertelsmannStiftung.