What's Georgia Doing?

For the latest information on Early Childhood issues in Georgia, visit the Department of Early Care and Learning - Bright from the Start web site.  Happy Birthday to the Department.  They are celebrating 20 years of leading the way!  Check out the birthday page!

Georgia among states to receive $280M in early learning grants - WXIA-TV

Here's a new video about the new Quality Rated program.

Early Childhood Teacher is an early childhood education website that should be helpful to Georgia educators.  The site was "created to provide new and future teachers with resources they need to succeed, such as classroom tools, lesson plans, and advice from experienced educators."  The site also offers a comprehensive state-by-state guide to teacher certification and becoming an early childhood educator.

Here is another strong resource about the early childhood profession.  Check Preschoolteacher.org for a wealth of information including more specifics on Georgia requirements.

Children's Growth and Classroom Experiences in Georgia's Pre-K Program - Findings from the 2011- 2012 Evaluation Study
Related story - Education Week

Here is a video produced by the Junior League of Atlanta featuring several Georgia advocates for early childhood education. Early Childhood Education: Making the Investment

Compounding Interest:  Why Zero to Five is an Investment Worth Making
Voices for Georgia's Children

Georgia Birth to Five Coalition
Voices for Georgia's Children

Alliance for Early Success - "Advancing State Policies for Young Children"

National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) - Conducts and communicates research to support high-quality, effective early childhood education for all young children.

Here is a short video on President Obama's Early Education Plan.  Here's more on the plan.

Early Childhood Education

There's a wealth of information on the early childhood years where the graduation pipeline begins.  Here you will find some representative reports, research and articles.  Posting here does not indicate Georgia Partnership endorsement.

Reading Instruction in Kindergarten: Little to Gain, Much to Lose
Defending the Early Years and Alliance for Childhood

In the U.S. there is widespread belief that teaching children to read early - in kindergarten or even prekindergarten - will help them be better readers in the long-run.  Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence that this is so.  How then did this idea take hold so strongly? Related story. (January 2015)

Regular naps are key to early learning

Trials with 216 babies up to 12 months old indicated they were unable to remember new tasks if they did not have a lengthy sleep soon afterwards. The University of Sheffield team suggested the best time to learn may be just before sleep and emphasized the importance of reading at bedtime. (January 2015)

Quality Counts 2015: Report and Rankings
Education Week

This annual report takes a broad look at the issues and forces shaping the discussion around early-childhood education.  It examines how new academic demands and the push for accountability are changing the nature of early childhood education for school administrators, teachers, and children alike. (January 2015)

The Economics of Early Childhood Investments
The White House

This report from the White House Council of Economic Advisers makes the case that investing in preschool education is absolutely worth it. Related story. Related story. (December 2014) 

Self-regulation intervention boosts school readiness of at-risk children, study shows
Oregon State University Study

An intervention that uses music and games to help preschoolers learn self-regulation skills is helping prepare at-risk children for kindergarten, a new study from Oregon State University shows. Related story. (November 2014)

Moving Beyond Screen Time - Redefining Developmentally Appropriate Technology Use in early Childhood Education
Rand Corporation

Screen time remains a hot-button issue, but classifying technology use guidelines to include active versus passive use, and how the technology is used, could help redefine traditional screen time guidelines as tech tools become increasingly integrated into early childhood education settings. Related story. (October 2014)

The Scarring Effects of Primary-Grade Retention? A Study of Cumulative Advantage in the Educational Career
Oxford Journals - Social Forces

The already muddy research on whether it’s better to hold back struggling students or promote them to the next grade just got muddier. This study is an empirically solid analysis that adds more weight to those who say retention — what education wonks call repeating a grade — is ultimately harmful. Related story. (October 2014)

The Effects of Poor Neonatal Health on Children's Cognitive Development
Institute for Policy Research - Northwestern University

This working paper makes use of a new data resource—merged birth and school records for all children born in Florida from 1992 to 2002—to study the effects of birth weight on cognitive development from kindergarten through schooling. Related story. (October 2014)

From Preschool to Prosperity: The Economic Payoff to Early Childhood Education
Timothy J. Bartik, Upjohn Institute

Bartik shows that investment in high-quality early childhood education has several long-term benefits, including higher adult earnings for program participants. (September 2014)

2014 Kids Count Data Book
The Annie E. Casey Foundation

This is an annual publication that assesses child well-being nationally and across the 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Georgia jumps one spot to 42nd! Georgia Family Connection Partnership press release. (July 2014)

Beyond Subprime Learning - Accelerated Progress in Early Learning
New American Education

Education policymakers must put more focus on teaching and learning in the early years and continue that work up through third grade.  Introduction. Related story. (July 2014)

The State of Preschool 2013
U.S. Department of Education

Forty states and the District of Columbia had state-supported preschool in 2012-13, serving 1.34 million children, according to this report. (May 2014)

Early Childhood Data System Survey
Early Childhood DATA Collaborative

The 2013 State of States’ Early Childhood Data Systems report is based on a survey of 50 states and the District of Columbia, assessing the coordination of their early childhood data systems. Press release. (February 2014)

Early Reading Proficiency in the United States
Annie E. Casey Foundation

Children who are proficient readers by the end of third grade are more likely to graduate from high school and to be economically successful in adulthood. Related article. (January 2014)

What's ahead in the 2014 legislative sessions for P-3?
Education Commission of the States

More than 500 state lawmakers from 49 states have signed a letter urging Congressional budget writers to increase federal spending on early childhood education. Related story. (December 2013)

Investing in Young Children: A Fact Sheet on Early Care and Education Participation, Access, and Quality

This report reveals that significant underinvestment in early care and education programs at the state and federal levels has left large numbers of children underserved. Introduction. (November 2013)
Synthesis of IES Research on Early Intervention & Early Childhood Education
Institute of Education Sciences

The results of dozens of research studies in early intervention and early-childhood education have been synthesized in this report. Related story. (July 2013) 

America's Children:  Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2013
Forum on Child and Family Statistics

This report features statistics on children and families in the U.S. across a range of domains, including family and social environment, economic circumstances, health care, physical environment and safety, behavior, education and health. Related storyPress release. (July 2013)

The United States is Far Behind Other Countries in Pre-K
Center for American Progress

Early childhood education and school readiness is essential to preparing our children to succeed in an increasingly competitive global economy. Compared to other countries, however, the United States lags far behind.  Introduction. (May 2013)

The State of Preschool 2012 (State Preschool Yearbook)
The National Institute for Early Education Research (Rutgers Graduate School of Education)

Spending on state-funded preschool dropped by more than half a billion dollars in the 2011-12 school year compared to the year before, creating a hole that some states are only now attempting to fill, according to this report.  Related story. (April 2013)

GEEARS - Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students

This is a map of Georgia’s school readiness indicators and community assets. This is a one-of-a-kind statewide map of indicators of school readiness. Users of the Blueprint are able to review data for each of Georgia’s 159 counties, and are able to make direct connections to the community assets that exist (or do not exist) to meet the needs of children in each county.  (April 2013)

College and Career Readiness:  The Importance of Early Learning

Advocating for a rich curriculum from Day One of early learning, even if that richness doesn't produce a quick pay off in test scores, this report points out that early learning allows student interests to develop at an early age, to grow over time, and provides a basis for learning in the later grades (ECS Connection). (April 2013) 

Federal Investment Can Help Close the Preschool-Access Gap
Center for American Progress

States are leading the charge to expand access to preschool, but a significant federal investment will radically increase the reach and quality of these programs. Related story. (April 2013)

Abbott Preschool Program Longitudinal Effects Study: Fifth Grade Follow-Up
National Institute for Early Education Research

One of the common questions raised about preschool is, “Do the benefits really last?”  According to this report, the answer is in the affirmative for New Jersey’s state-funded program. Related story. (March 2013)

Fact Sheet President Obama’s Plan for Early Education for All Americans
White House

Te president unveiled more details for providing high-quality preschool programs for "every child in America." The proposal includes a federal-state partnership to provide preschool funding for any 4-year-old whose family income is 200% or less of the federal poverty level. Related story. (February 2013)

Meaningful  Differences in the Everyday Lives of American Children
Early Education for All

While children from different backgrounds typically develop language skills around the same age, the subsequent rate of vocabulary growth is strongly influenced by how much parents talk to their children. Related story. (February 2013)

Investing in Our Children - A Plan to Expand Access to PreSchool and Child Care
Center for American Progress

This issue brief presents a plan to expand educational opportunities and care for children ages 0-5 years old by investing significant federal dollars to:

  • Make high-quality preschool universally accessible to all 3- and 4-year-old children
  • Enable more lower-income families to afford child care for children ages 0-3 years old
    Related story. (February 2013)

Advisory Committee on Headstart Research and Evaluation
The report suggests potential to enhance both short-term and longer-term outcomes of Head Start by making quality improvements within Head Start and Early Head Start, and by improving how gains are maintained and built upon in elementary school (PEN). Related story. (December 2012)

America's Report Card 2012: Children in the US
First Focus

This report provides a holistic picture of unmet needs in five areas of a child’s life: economic security, early childhood education, K-12 education, permanence and stability, and health and safety.

Governor's Role in Aligning Early Childhood Education and K-12 Reforms; Challenges, Opportunities and benefits for Children
National Governor's Association

As more and more states pursue reforms in both early childcare (ECE) and the K–12 education system, governors are uniquely placed to bring together state agencies to coordinate ECE and K–12 systems to better serve all children, starting at birth. This paper outlines steps governors can take to bring the two systems into alignment. Related article. (October 2012)

Double Jeopardy - How Third Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation
Annie E. Casey Foundation

Educators and researchers have long recognized the importance of mastering reading by the end of third grade. Students who fail to reach this critical milestone often falter in the later grades.  Now, researchers have confirmed this link in the first national study to calculate high school graduation rates for children at different reading skill levels and with different poverty rates. (October 2012)

This issue brief addresses the dearth of reliable, complete, and comparable data on pre-K and kindergarten in school districts and local communities. Press release. (October 2012)

America's Report Card 2012: Children in the US
First Focus

This report provides a holistic picture of unmet needs in five areas of a child’s life: economic security, early childhood education, K-12 education, permanence and stability, and health and safety. Related story. (October 2012) 

First-Time Kindergartners in 2010-11: First Findings From the Kindergarten Rounds of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-11
Institute of Education Sciences/National Center for Education Statistics

This provides a snapshot of the 3.5 million kindergartners who were attending kindergarten in the United States for the first time in the 2010-11 school year. The ECLS-K:2011 is a longitudinal study that will follow students from their kindergarten year to the spring of 2016, when most of them are expected to be in fifth grade. (July 2012)

Increasing the Effectiveness and Efficiency of Existing Public Investments in Early Childhood Education - Recommendations to Boost Program Outcomes and Efficiency
Center for American Progress

The authors explore how conflicting expectations, misaligned system requirements, and programmatic firewalls create barriers to the implementation of a well-coordinated system of high-quality education for children ages birth to 5. Related story. (June 2012)

The State of Preschool 2011
National Institute for Early Education Research

This latest Yearbook presents data on state-funded prekindergarten during the 2010-2011 school year as well as documenting a decade of progress since the first Yearbook collected data on the 2001-2002 school year. (April 2012)

A Count for Quality: Child Care Center Directors on Rating and Improvement Systems
National Women's Law Center

Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS) - a strategy to improve families' access to high-quality child care - assess the quality of child care programs, offer incentives and assistance to programs to improve their ratings, and give information to parents about the quality of child care. Relating story. (March 2012)

The Abecedarin Project
University of North Carolina

Poor children who get high-quality day care as early as infancy reap long-lasting benefits, including a better chance at a college degree and steady employment, according to this study that followed participants from birth to age 30. Relating story. (January 2012)

The Importance of Talking in Class
American Sociological Review 

A recent University of Pennsylvania study shows that economic and social class plays a role in elementary grade students' ability to ask for help from teachers. (January 2012)

Policy Brief:  The Importance of Aligning Pre-K Through 3rd Grade
The Pre-K Coalition 

Child development is a continuous process that must be fed and nurtured along the way.  Gains made in high-quality pre-k programs must be sustained by quality education throughout the K-3 years. (January 2012)