ERIC Number: ED544021
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Feb
Reference Count: 0
Learning How Much Quality Is Necessary to Get to Good Results for Children. NCRECE In Focus. Volume 1, Issue 2
Goffin, Stacie G.
National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education
How good does an early childhood program have to be in order to achieve school readiness outcomes for children? This is known as the "threshold question," and policy makers and others have wanted an answer to this question since the onset of public investments in early care and education (ECE) programs. With expansion of Head Start and pre-kindergarten programs for three- and four-year-old children, this question is getting even more attention. Policy and other decision makers want this information so they can craft policies and direct resources to those factors that make the most difference to children's school readiness. While we know that higher quality ECE programs and better results for children tend to go hand-in-hand, we don't know the level of quality or quality indicators that are necessary for achieving learning outcomes that help children be successful in kindergarten and beyond. In an attempt to fill this knowledge gap--to try and identify the minimum level of program quality required to attain positive results for children--this study examined academic and social outcomes for children from low income families. For the purposes of this study, low-income was defined by household income of less than 150% of the federal poverty level. The study focused on these children because, as a group, they are the target of most policy decisions related to program quality and access by families. The study used data on teacher-child interactions and instructional quality from an 11-state pre-kindergarten (pre-k) evaluation. The findings show that achieving positive child outcomes require higher-quality, publicly-funded pre-k programs than typically are available.
Descriptors: School Readiness, Kindergarten, Preschool Education, Poverty, Disadvantaged Youth, Low Income Groups, Educational Quality, Outcomes of Education, Educational Policy, Teacher Student Relationship, Instructional Effectiveness, Preschool Children, Educational Assessment, Theory Practice Relationship, Federal Programs, Early Childhood Education
National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education. 350 Old Ivy Way Suite 100, Charlottesville, VA 22903. Tel: 866-301-8278; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://curry.virginia.edu/research/centers/castl/project/ncrece
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Sponsor: Institute of Education Sciences (ED)
Authoring Institution: National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education (NCRECE)