In this paper I present a part of a larger project on documentation in Swedish preschools. In the study I explore how documentation in Swedish preschool’s systematic quality work is done. The aim is to understand what preschool teachers and models for systematic quality work produce together. By focusing both the teachers and the models I will try to discern how both these actors are involved in documentation and what they produce together. Since 2012 the Swedish Education Act prescribes all education to be planned, followed up and developed by the municipal accountable school authority as well as by the head of local schools (or preschools) (SFS 2010:800). The aim is to make quality and equality visible, to develop the fulfilment of national goals and to create participation and dialogue about this fulfilment and possible inadequacies. This systematic quality work should be done continuously and comprise certain steps which should be documented. The steps are presented visually, as a model, in the form of a ‘wheel’ by the National Agency of Education (Skolverket, 2012). According to Sheridan, et al. (2013) there is a lack of knowledge about how preschool teacher’s deal with systematic quality work.
There is also a need to develop methods and approaches. Interviewing preschool teachers about documentation Löfgren (2014), concluded that these teachers produced images of their work in line with quality measurement instruments used in their municipalities. Therefore, studying how a model for systematic quality work and preschool teachers together produce documentation is crucial. Since I am interested in how documentation is produced by preschool teachers together with models, the study will draw on the theory of agential realism (Barad, 1996), where agency is seen as material-discursive and where humans and non-humans can be, more or less, equally active. This perspective will contribute to understanding of how both models and teachers are involved in documentation. Additionally, documentality (Steyerl, 2003) and governmentality (Foucault, 1991) are also considered. Since documents are involved in evaluation and development of preschool quality, these perspectives will contribute to understanding of how documents govern preschool practice, in this case, specifically the documentation practice.
NERA 2015 - Marketisation and Differentiation in Education, Gothenburg, Sweden, March 4-6, 2015