children playing

Work well-being during COVID-19: A survey of Canadian early childhood education and care managers

Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version
Bigras N, Fortin G, Lemay L, Robert-Mazaye C, Charron A, & Duval S
Publication Date: 
20 Jun 2022


This study investigated the level of well-being at work of early childhood education and care (ECEC) managers during winter 2021 in the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. ECEC managers’ well-being at work appears essential to provide high-quality educational services to children and their families. Several factors are known to affect well-being at work, including stress, burnout, self-compassion, and depressive symptoms. Evaluating ECEC managers’ well-being at work, our study is based on the Job Demands and Resources model. This model implies considering the demands of the workplace, including physical and psychological efforts and costs, and the resources required to achieve professional goals, which can reduce the impacts of work demand. Quantitative data were collected from 327 ECEC managers in Quebec (Canada) via online questionnaires from February to March 2021. Online questionnaires allowed to gather data on stress, burnout, self-compassion, and depressive symptoms at work. Preliminary results indicate that, from February to March 2021, 21.3% of the ECEC managers were facing a low level of stress while 71,6% indicated a moderate level of stress. Also, 100% reported a low level of accomplishment at work (a burnout subscale), 52,1% indicated a high level of isolation (self-compassion subscale), whereas 12.8% revealed a high level of depressive symptoms. The discussion will address ECEC managers well-being in normal, pandemic, and new-normal times and implications for practice. To balance the work demands, it will highlight especially the need for more available resources to support the mental health of those working in ECEC.