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Research on elements of quality of preK, links between quality and outcomes, and inclusion

Quality and Curriculum

Technical Report: Kindergarten Early Learning Scale


September 2014
Shannon Riley-Ayers, Kwanghee Jung, & Jorie Quinn

The Kindergarten Early Learning Scale (KELS) was developed as a concise observational assessment for young children. It examines three domains including (1) Math/Science, (2) Social Emotional/Social Studies, and (3) Language and Literacy, with a total of 10 items across the domains. Scores reported for each of the 10 items are based upon observational evidence collected by the teacher over a period of roughly three months. This [report] outlines how decisions about the content of the instrument were made, based on several criteria, and the value of the instrument. The items assessed represent the development of kindergarten children, are measurable (observable), develop on a continuum (to see growth and development over time), and are critical to present and future learning.

The State of Infant-Toddler Care and Education in New Jersey


December 2013
Judith M. Y. Alexandre, Natalie Makow, Kwanghee Jung, Steve Barnett

In this report to New Jersey Council for Young Children (NJCYC) Department of Education, researchers present the results of two studies of the quality of child care received by infants and toddlers in New Jersey which addressed the following questions: What is the quality of infant and toddler center-based care in New Jersey?  What is the quality of this infant/toddler care in each of the twenty one counties?  What are some common strengths and weaknesses of infant and toddler center-based care?

Fact Sheet: The Abbott Preschool Program Longitudinal Effects Study (APPLES)


December 2013

Beginning in the 2005-2006 school year, the seventh year of implementation of the high-quality pre-K program in New Jersey's Abbott districts, NIEER began a longitudinal study to measure learning gains from participating in Abbott pre-K.  At the time the study began, quality had risen but not yet to its current level, and 40,500 3- and 4-year-old children were served. This fact sheet presents key takeaways from NIEER's longitudinal study of the program quality and child outcomes.

The Essex Quality Improvement Project (EQUIP)


June 2013
Judith Marie Yves Alexandre, Natalie Makow, Kwanghee Jung, W. Steven Barnett

A survey of the quality of infant and toddler child care in Essex County (including Newark, Orange, Irvington and East Orange) finds that high quality care is scarce, especially for infants.  Poor quality care is far too common. Recommendations for improvement are offered based on a study of the determinants of care quality in Essex County.

Trends in State Funded Preschool Programs: Survey Findings from 2001-2002 to 2011-2012


June 2013
W. Steven Barnett, Ph.D. and Megan E. Carolan, MPP

This policy report, co-released by the National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) and the Center on Enhancing Early Learning Outcomes (CEELO), discusses trends in enrollment, funding, and quality standards, as well as English Language Learner and Special Education students, in state-funded pre-K between 2001-2002 and 2011-2012.

Early Childhood Education: Pathways to Better Health


April 2013

This brief presents the multiple pathways through which early childhood education programs can contribute to better health, in both the short and long term.

Getting the Facts Right on Pre-K and the President’s Pre-K Proposal


February 2013
W. Steven Barnett

This policy report clears up some common misconceptions about preschool's effectiveness and benefits, particularly in regards to the Obama administration's recent fact sheet on investing in early education.

Policy Brief – Preparing Young Hispanic Dual Language Learners for a Knowledge Economy


January 2013

This brief addresses issues of preschool access and quality that are specific to Hispanic children but which can also apply to some other largely disadvantaged and immigrant groups.

Preschool Education as an Educational Reform: Issues of Effectiveness and Access


September 2011
W. Steven Barnett

In this paper for the National Research Council and U.S. Equity and Excellence Commission, NIEER Director Steve Barnett looks at studies that provide rigorous estimates of the effects of some large scale, state-funded pre-K programs – both targeted and universal.  Using available data on preschool access in the United States, Dr. Barnett also provides estimates on pre-K enrollment by family income and the costs of providing educationally effective pre-K programs to all children.

Policy Brief – Perspectives on the Impact of Pre-K Expansion: Factors to Consider and Lessons from New York and Ohio


February 2011

The impact of state-funded pre-K expansion on the quality and supply of child care in New York and Ohio are assessed in this policy brief.