Below are resources for early childhood professionals and those serving the early childhood community.

Duckworth, Durbin announce funding to help kids prepare for kindergarten after recent study  U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced $62,694,857 in federal funding Thursday to help children in Illinois access Head Start and Early Head Start programs in central Illinois, northwest Illinois and the Chicago area.  The announcement comes after a recent Illinois Board of Education study that shows only 24 percent of Illinois kindergarten students were rated as prepared in all development areas for kindergarten, while 42 percent were not ready in any development area.

Case Study: Care in Illinois  In recent years, LeFlore’s ability to take on all students has been hampered by a growing and intensifying budget crisis in Illinois. A massive deficit meant that the state had $8 billion dollars in unpaid bills. As a result, the state radically cut the number of students who could qualify for child care subsidies, and state payments for those remaining students were delayed.

The Early Advantage 1: Early Childhood Systems That Lead By ExampleIn the new book, The Early Advantage 1: Early Childhood Systems That Lead By Example, world-renowned early childhood researcher Sharon Lynn Kagan and her team of international experts examined the innovative approaches to early childhood policy, practice, and service delivery in these leading systems.  Kagan and her team analyzed the quality, equity, efficiency and sustainability of services for young children in the six jurisdictions. The book takes readers on a deep dive into the innovative strategies and approaches to ECEC and offers an insider’s look into common challenges, themes and lessons from these diverse systems.

Transitions and Alignment From Preschool to Kindergarten  Successful coordination between preschool and kindergarten plays a key role in laying the groundwork for a child’s positive school experience. State policymakers can help set early learners up for success through effective transition programs and practices, and alignment of standards, curricula, instruction and assessments in early education.

Building Successful P-3 Initiatives: Foundations and Catalysts for Systems Change  This report focuses on the elements needed in a community to build and fuel cross-sector initiatives that support the Prenatal-through-Grade 3 continuum. The brief is less about what children experience directly inside classrooms and programs, and more about the necessary infrastructure that supports and sustains collaborative P-3 efforts.  Throughout the report, examples from across the state of Oregon are provided.