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Early childhood education resources

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

Inaugural Illinois Risk and Reach Report  The Illinois Risk and Reach report offers a set of data tools (including a comprehensive early childhood focused report) along with an interactive website that brings together an analysis of child well-being indicators in relation to state investments in three areas: family stability, health, and early care and education.

All Our Kids Early Childhood Networks  The Notice of Funding Opportunity for the All Our Kids Early Childhood Networks initiative grant has been posted.  The GA-1251 will open the three-page Uniform Application for State Grant Assistance form that needs to be completed and submitted with your proposal.

Illinois Risk and Reach Report  The Report provides county-by-county data on the well-being of children and the public resources available to them. Data are organized by three domains (Family Stability, Health, and Early Care and Education) and provide necessary information for critical policy and funding decisions.

Strengthening the Early Childhood Education Continuum  This Policy Guide draws on work with five states to provide context and guidance for policymakers looking to strengthen the pre-K to K-3 continuum and create opportunities to close the achievement gap. It includes a tear-out page of guiding questions at the end.

How Playful Learning Can Help Leapfrog Progress in Education  If the education sector stays on its current trajectory, half of all youth around the world entering the workforce in 2030 will lack basic secondary-level skills they need to thrive—from literacy and numeracy to critical thinking and problem solving.   We believe that leapfrogging, or rapid nonlinear progress, is needed to change this trajectory.  Read the report

Research Finds Pre-K Enrollment, Spending Stagnant, As Key Federal Early Learning Grants Are About to Dry Up  “Those grants go away this year … States are going to have to find a way to fill that budget hole,” Steven Barnett, co-director of the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University, said on a webinar with reporters Tuesday.

Two Reports Endorse Investment in Illinois Early Childhood Education  A pair of reports released this week offered supporting arguments for one of Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s top priorities: increasing investment in early childhood education.

2020 Young Scholars Program Call for Proposals  The Foundation for Child Development is currently accepting proposals for its 2020 Young Scholars Program (YSP). YSP supports scholarship for early career researchers. The program funds implementation research that is policy and practice-relevant and that examines the preparation, competency, compensation, well-being, and on-going professional learning of the early care and education (ECE) workforce. Research awards are up to $225,000 for primary research and up to $180,000 for secondary data analysis. The deadline to submit a Letter of Intent is Monday, June 10, 2019, at 3:00pm EST.

Legislative Plan Provides ‘Roadmap’ for Boosting Early Ed Access in CA  The report lays out a plan to gradually increase access to care and education programs for families in poverty, and it encourages stronger partnerships between school districts and early learning providers. (Education Dive)

Building Early Education Leaders  In the first installment of a new series focused on elementary leaders, New America takes a closer look at how states and districts are equipping principals to support young learners.

Could ‘Redshirting’ Become A Thing of the Past in Illinois?  A bill that recently passed in the Illinois Senate and is under consideration in the House would require children in the state to attend kindergarten if they are 5 years old by May 31. Advocates hope it can help combat achievement gaps early.

Comments

"Strengthening the Early Childhood Education Continuum This Policy Guide draws on work with five states to provide context and guidance for policymakers looking to strengthen the pre-K to K-3 continuum and create opportunities to close the achievement gap. It includes a tear-out page of guiding questions at the end." One of the questions should be "What if the achievement gap is here to stay?
Why? National data on average performance for students who take an internationally recognized test, such as the SAT—students who represent the cream of the academic crop-- suggest that increased participation in the pre-K to K-3 continuum won't close the achievement gap which appears to get larger as the grades go by. In any event, the All Student average for SAT Critical Reading hasn't changed materially in recent decades— true as well for average scores of groups classified by race/ethnicity – except for Asian-Americans, who have closed one reading achievement gap and opened another! They now lead the pack! How did they do it? Quien sabe.
Table 1. SAT Critical Reading average selected years
1987 '97 2001 '06 '11 '15 '16
507 505 506 503 497 495 494 All students
524 526 529 527 528 529 528 White
479 496 501 510 517 525 529 Asian
................................. ....... 436 Hispanic
.457 451 451 454 451 448 Mex-Am
436 454 457 459 452 448 Puerto R
464 466 460 458 451 449 Oth Hisp
471 475 481 487 484 481 447 Amer Ind
428 434 433 434 428 431 430 Black
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education
Statistics.(2012). Digest of Education Statistics, 2011 (NCES 2012-001), Chapter 2. SAT averages
for college-bound seniors, by race/ethnicity: Selected years,1986-87 through
2010–11 Data for 2015&2016 https://nces.ed.gov/fastfac... Note 2016 data were no provided
for Hispanic subgroups.

If SAT averages haven't changed materially for almost 30 years, despite the effort, time and money expended to improve educational programs for all students, it seems reasonable to assume that we shouldn't expect any meaningful change in average level of performance in this critically important ability in the foreseeable future.

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