Institutional Care for Young Children: Review of Literature and Policy Implications

Published On: March 1, 2012


By Mary Dozier, Charles H. Zeanah, Allison R. Wallin, and Carole Shauffer

Social Issues and Policy Review
Volume 6, Issue 1, pages 1–25, March 2012

Millions of infants and toddlers are in institutional care around the world, care that is poorly suited to meet young children’s developmental needs. In this article, the authors briefly review the history of institutional care and surrogate care, then discuss why institutional care is at odds with children’s needs, and review the empirical evidence regarding the effects of institutional care on young children’s development. Finally, they discuss alternatives to institutional care, and make recommendations for changes.

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