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

Connecting Child Health and School Readiness

Children and Youth, Education and Literacy, Health

Connecting Child Health and School Readiness

Describes research, practices, and policy options for integrating efforts to enhance child health and school readiness by ensuring child health care; linking child health, early learning, early intervention and family support; and improving environments.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Western)-Colorado, 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.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States

Moving to Outcomes: Approaches to Incorporating Child Assessments Into State Early Childhood Quality Rating and Improvement Systems

Children and Youth, Education and Literacy

Moving to Outcomes: Approaches to Incorporating Child Assessments Into State Early Childhood Quality Rating and Improvement Systems

Analyzes state policy options for incorporating direct assessments of children into the design, implementation, and evaluation of quality rating and improvement systems and other quality improvement efforts to determine the impact on child outcomes.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Western)-California

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