As pivotal transition point for children, kindergarten entry is a unique moment in time for gauging children's development and using assessment data to look both backward and forward. Since public school systems serve most kindergartners, they have an opportunity to obtain a statewide perspective on students' developmental status at a critical juncture. They can also use that information to inform early childhood and early elementary practices and policies.
Therefore, data from the kindergarten entry assessment is important for teachers, program administrators, policymakers and, most importantly, for the development, educational achievement and lifelong success of children.
Review of State KEA Plans Proposed for the Early Learning Challenge
Kindergarten Entry Assessment is increasingly seen as an important strategy for gauging and supporting children’s kindergarten “readiness.” This issue brief looks at the KEA experiences of the subset of states (35 of the 37) applying for Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge (RTTT-ELC) funds that chose to develop a KEA as part of their plans. The brief examines the current status of state KEAs, and noteworthy trends and promising proposals from the RTTT-ELC applications. It then looks ahead to key issues that all states working on KEAs should consider as they start to implement KEA plans.
Q&A on WaKIDS: Washington’s KEA Process
This resource comes from a Q&A session hosted by the BUILD Initiative and the Early Learning Challenge Collaborative, and features information on WaKIDS. This recent conversation focused on the components of Washington’s new kindergarten entry assessment process as well as the planning, implementation and future steps for a statewide rollout.
Top 10 Recommendations for Implementing KEA
Initially developed to support state early childhood leaders, this fact sheet offers readers from all backgrounds insights into best practices for implementing kindergarten entry assessments. The recommendations were gleaned from the BUILD Initiative's review of the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge plans. And they support KEA implementation whether states are doing this critical work with or without RTT-ELC funding.
Kindergarten Entry Assessment Discussion Guide
This discussion guide, prepared by Catherine Scott-Little and Charles Bruner, with Tom Schultz, summarizes the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge review criteria and guidelines for states that elect to address the kindergarten entry assessment, and provides guidance on issues that should be considered when developing a plan for a KEA.
Kindergarten Readiness Assessment Report
Working over a six-month period that began in January 2012, the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment Workgroup has developed recommendations for an Oregon statewide kindergarten readiness assessment. Workgroup participants included kindergarten teachers, district administrators, early educators, Department of Education specialists, researchers, Oregon Education Investment Board staff and members of the Early Learning Council. The council adopted the report’s primary recommendation, the composite approach, that will be piloted in fall 2012 and rolled out statewide in fall 2013. The assessment will help local educators support their students’ strengths, and meet their educational and instructional needs. Educators will also be better able to identify needed resources and community partnerships that will strengthen children’s readiness to learn.