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ERIC Number: ED539030
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Feb
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
Early Care and Education: Aligning the Early Years and the Early Grades. The Progress of Education Reform. Volume 9, Number 1
Howard, Mimi
Education Commission of the States (NJ3)
This issue of The Progress of Education Reform addresses the policies and practices associated with sustaining school readiness and boosting achievement for young children throughout the early elementary years. All three studies support the notion that an aligned and coordinated set of policies and practices linking early learning with the early elementary grades will maximize a return on investments and help ensure later academic success. Policymakers and educators continue to grapple with issues of persistent achievement gaps in student performance at grade 3 and beyond. As they do, they are looking for ways to create a more "seamless" system of education that "assures young people's education is connected from one stage to the next--reducing the chances that students will be lost along the way or require remedial programs to acquire skills or knowledge they could have learned right from the start." State policymakers are beginning now to look for ways to fill the gap in education policy and practice that links school readiness efforts and school improvement efforts. Policymakers face three key questions: (1) Where does an expanded education continuum begin--at birth, at age 3 or at some other critical point in a child's development?; (2) How do we effectively create linkages between and across early education and early elementary school programs?; and (3) What characteristics of an elementary school have the capacity to sustain and increase children's learning in the early grades? Each of the works reviewed in this paper addresses one or more of these questions. While there is no "right" answer, each paper provides readers with options and opportunities that may help focus their own unique education policy and practice priorities. (Contains 3 endnotes.)
Education Commission of the States. ECS Distribution Center, 700 Broadway Suite 1200, Denver, CO 80203-3460. Tel: 303-299-3692; Fax: 303-296-8332; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: GE Foundation
Authoring Institution: Education Commission of the States