We recently updated our Kindergarten Database, which is an overview of kindergarten policies in the 50 states plus the District of Columbia. Some of the policies in this database include compulsory school age, teacher/student ratios, kindergarten entrance age and kindergarten entrance assessments.
ECS recently released an overview of the top issues highlighted in the State of the State addresses. At least 14 governors and the mayor of D.C. highlighted preschool proposals, primarily focusing on expanding access to pre-K programs. A few states also discussed early learning issues. See the full report on our website.
Tell us why early childhood education is important!
The Early Learning Institute at ECS is looking for personal stories from educators that illustrate the importance of providing a high-quality early education. Stories will be featured in future ECS P-3 Newsletters. Make submissions to Emily Workman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What's Happening in the States
Washington: New state coordinating council for young children with disabilities
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signed an executive order establishing the State Interagency Coordinating Council for Infants and Toddlers with Disabilities and Their Families. This council will work with several state agencies to coordinate policies that help children with disabilities and to implement a statewide early intervention system.
Illinois: 'Ready to Learn' in Chicago
Chicago Public Schools recently opened registration for early learning programs through their Chicago: Ready to Learn! initiative. This program expands access to early learning programs for children not currently attending early learning programs and increases wraparound services available in existing programs to improve their quality. These programs are income based and will be free or have sliding scale tuition. Read more about it in a press release from the Chicago Public Schools.
Digital technology and early education
In the United States, standards for K-12 education place increasing importance on information and communication technology (ICT), but many children in low-income families have fewer opportunities to develop ICT skills at an early age. A report from The RAND Corporation suggests that incorporating ICT into early childhood education programs could help bridge the technology gap for disadvantaged students.
A First Look: Programs to improve social-emotional skills in Head Start classrooms
Low-income preschool children are often at risk for lagging behind their peers in proper social-emotional development, and many preschool teachers say they lack the strategies that can help children with these challenges. Researchers identified three different programs proven to help children with social-emotional issues and then implemented them in several Head Start classrooms. This report is an overview of the implementation process, and future reports will focus on the results of these strategies.