Blueprint for Early Care and Education Quality Improvement Initiatives: Final Report, A

Children and Youth;Education and Literacy

Blueprint for Early Care and Education Quality Improvement Initiatives: Final Report, A

As Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS) continue to launch and mature across states, questions emerge from stakeholders about how to design and implement effective quality improvement (QI) initiatives that accompany a QRIS. Funders, policymakers and program developers with limited resources are looking to invest in activities that will be most successful in supporting early care and education (ECE) program quality improvement and ultimately improving outcomes for young children. The purpose of this report is to address questions about effective QI initiatives by proposing a blueprint of quality improvement practices and design considerations generated from a synthesis of the existing research literature and input from national experts in ECE quality improvement.

March 2015

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Immigrant Parents and Early Childhood Programs: Addressing Barriers of Literacy, Culture, and Systems Knowledge

Children and Youth, Education and Literacy, Immigration

Immigrant Parents and Early Childhood Programs: Addressing Barriers of Literacy, Culture, and Systems Knowledge

Immigrant parents face significant barriers as they try to engage with their children's early educational experiences, including greatly restricted access for many due to limited English proficiency and functional literacy. Parental engagement is critical for young children's early cognitive and socioemotional development, and for their participation in programs that are designed to support early learning. Reducing the barriers to parent engagement in early childhood education and care (ECEC) programs would encourage school success, and help many young children of immigrants close the gaps in kindergarten readiness with their native peers.

Recent years have seen a rapid increase in the size and share of the U.S. young-child population with at least one immigrant parent, posing challenges to policymakers and front-line programs in the early childhood arena. These demographic changes are converging with efforts in many states to expand early childhood services and improve their quality. With one in four young children in the United States living in an immigrant family, efforts to build trust and establish meaningful two-way communication with these families is an urgent priority if system expansion efforts are to realize their purpose.

Many programs face difficulties engaging with immigrant and refugee parents who often require support building U.S. cultural and systems knowledge and in overcoming English language and literacy barriers. These difficulties have been exacerbated in recent years as adult basic education and English instruction programs, which early childhood programs such as Head Start had previously relied on to support parents in need of these skills, have been significantly reduced.

Against this backdrop, this report identifies the unique needs of newcomer parents across the range of expectations for parent skill, engagement, and leadership sought by ECEC programs, and strategies undertaken to address these needs. The study is based on field research in six states, expert interviews, a literature review, and a sociodemographic analysis.

June 2014

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children

Education and Literacy, Race and Ethnicity

Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children

In this policy report, the Annie E. Casey Foundation explores the intersection of kids, race and opportunity. The report features the new Race for Results index, which compares how children are progressing on key milestones across racial and ethnic groups at the national and state level. The index is based on 12 indicators that measure a child's success in each stage of life, from birth to adulthood, in the areas of early childhood; education and early work; family supports; and neighborhood context. The report also makes four policy recommendations to help ensure that all children and their families achieve their full potential.

March 2014

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Being Black Is Not a Risk Factor: A Strengths-Based Look at the State of the Black Child

Education and Literacy;Race and Ethnicity

Being Black Is Not a Risk Factor: A Strengths-Based Look at the State of the Black Child

Including nine essays from experts and five "points of proof" organization case studies, this publication challenges the prevailing discourse about black children and intends to facilitate a conversation around strengths, assets, and resilience. It addresses the needs of policymakers, advocates, principals, teachers, parents, and others.

October 2013

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Early Warning Confirmed: A Research Update on Third Grade Reading

Education and Literacy

Early Warning Confirmed: A Research Update on Third Grade Reading

Updated research in this report underscores the urgency of ensuring that children develop proficient reading skills by the end of third grade, especially those living in poverty or in impoverished communities. A follow up to 2010's "Early Warning: Why Reading by the End of Third Grade Matters," this report supports the link between reading deficiencies and broader social consequences, including how living in poor households and high-poverty neighborhoods contribute to racial disparities in literacy skills in America and how low achievement in reading impacts an individual's future earning potential.

May 2013

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Building a Birth-to-College Model: Professional Learning Communities

Education and Literacy

Building a Birth-to-College Model: Professional Learning Communities

The newest in a planned series of case studies on building a birth-to-college model of education released by the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute (UEI) and the Ounce of Prevention Fund outlines how to create professional learning communities (PLCs) of teachers, administrators and family support staff spanning the early childhood to K-12 spectrum.

The intent of the PLCs is to create environments where practitioners take the lead in collaboratively studying and piloting effective, developmentally informed practices that prepare children for college, beginning at birth.

December 2012

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Midwestern)-Illinois-Cook County-Chicago

Educating English Language Learners: Grantmaking Strategies For Closing America's Other Achievement Gap

Education and Literacy, Immigration, Nonprofits and Philanthropy

Educating English Language Learners: Grantmaking Strategies For Closing America's Other Achievement Gap

This study draws upon two sources of data: an online survey and telephone interviews. In spring 2012, GFE selected 138 grantmaking organizations to participate in an online survey. The sample was composed primarily of GFE members who had indicated in GFE's 2010 and 2011 benchmarking surveys that they made grants to English learners or immigrants, but it was supplemented with funders identified as significant investors in English learners by Grantmakers for Children, Youth and Families and Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees.

Fifty-seven grantmakers completed responses to the survey, representing diverse grantmaking entities including family foundations, private foundations, community foundations and corporate funders. Researchers supplemented the survey by conducting in-depth phone interviews with 24 survey respondents selected to represent a range of foundation sizes, organization types, geographic regions and ELL funding priorities. The study also convened an Advisory Committee comprising GFE members who are experienced funders of English learners. The advisory committee offered advice on research design, interpretation of research findings, and supplemental resources (listed in report appendix).

April 2013

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Into the Fray: How a Funders Coalition Restored Momentum for Early Learning in Minnesota

Education and Literacy, Nonprofits and Philanthropy

Into the Fray: How a Funders Coalition Restored Momentum for Early Learning in Minnesota

This case study tells the story of Minnesota philanthropic funders who built the case and mobilized constituencies for high-impact early learning investments in the state, guiding Minnesota toward federal grant awards totaling nearly $90 million for early learning.

Minnesota's experience offers important lessons regionally and nationally for those seeking to advance the cause of early childhood education in their communities and states.

September 2012

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Midwestern)-Minnesota

See More Reports

Go to IssueLab