The Early Childhood Outcomes Center was funded by the Office of Special Education Programs to develop an approach for collecting data on child and family outcomes for the Part C early intervention and Part B preschool programs of IDEA. The resulting data are to be used for federal and state accountability purposes and to improve programs. A new document entitled Family Outcomes of Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education is the product of the initial step in developing this approach. The outcomes were developed through a year-long consensus building process that involved input from and review by numerous stakeholders including federal, state, and local policy-makers and administrators, local providers, family members of children with disabilities, and researchers. For more information go to http://www.fpg.unc.edu/%7Eeco/index.cfm. The document is available online at http://www.fpg.unc.edu/~eco/assets/pdfs/ECO_Outcomes_4-13-05.pdf.
The purpose of the State Maternal and Child Health Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (SECCS) Grant Program is to help States plan, develop, and ultimately implement collaborations and partnerships to support families and communities to raise children that are healthy and ready to learn at school entry. Contact information for current grantees is available at http://www.state-eccs.org/. New awards are expected to be made in July 2005.
The most recent issue of the Head Start Bulletin contains best practices, training models, recent research, and web-based resources related to young children who are English language learners and their families. Sections include: The Community and Families; Educational Leaders; Teachers and Home Visitors Speak; Assessment; and Resources. Available at http://www.headstartinfo.org/publications/hsbulletin78/cont_78.htm
Research shows that too many young children enter kindergarten with physical, social, emotional and cognitive deficits that could have been minimized or eliminated through early intervention. A new report entitled Getting Ready: Findings from the National School Readiness Indicators Initiative, shows how identifying indicators of school readiness and tracking progress on those measures can lead to more effective policies and investments in early childhood. The full report, press release and executive summary are available online at http://www.gettingready.org/matriarch/MultiPiecePage.asp_Q_PageID_E_318_A_PageName_E_NationalSchoolReadinessIndicat.
The NGA Center for Best Practices has released an interim report it commissioned on the 2005 state-of-the-state addresses of 28 of the nation's governors. The report, The Governors Speak -- 2005, found most states are facing improved economic and budgetary outlooks, but fiscal prudence remains the watchword for governors across the country. The report also details examples of innovative strategies and programs governors have proposed and launched this year as they prepare to move their priorities forward.
Regarding early childhood education, the report states: "33 percent (9) supported or proposed programs to enhance early childhood education through improved or expanded preschool programs, a rating system for child care providers, and expanded access to full-day kindergarten. Many governors were supportive of regular and on-going increases in the percentage of children who have access to preschool, but there does not yet appear to be a groundswell of support for universal preschool (primarily because of the lack of sufficient funding)."
The report is available online at http://www.nga.org/Files/pdf/GOVSPEAK05.pdf.