Proceedings of the New England Meeting of the State Child Indicators Projects: Forum on School Readiness and Child Care Indicators. Discussion

12/03/1999

Catherine Walsh of Rhode Island Kids Count summarized Kagan’s talk and noted that both short- and long-term goals can be supported by school-readiness and child care indicators. Then Mairéad Reidy and Sara Watson sketched the indicators under development by the ASPE-supported and Starting Points projects.

The ASPE-Supported Sites

Mairéad Reidy of Chapin Hall reviewed the indicators under development in each ASPE-supported project. Those indicators were summarized on a handout that is reproduced below.

School Readiness

Health-Related Indicators

Immunization

  • Percentage of kindergartners fully immunized (Department of Health immunization program) [Vermont]
  • Percentage of properly immunized two-year-olds (Kids Count) [Hawaii]
  • Percentage of children entering school immunized (Department of Health) [New York]
  • Percentage of children who are immunized on appropriate schedule (early childhood screening) [Minnesota]

Abuse & Neglect

  • Rate of child reported abuse & neglect (Kids Count) [Hawaii]
  • Rate of confirmed child abuse & neglect (Kids Count) [Hawaii]
  • Indicated reports of child abuse and maltreatment (Office of Children and Family Services) [New York]

Injuries/Hospitalization

  • Rate of unintentional injuries receiving emergency room treatment (Kids Count) [Hawaii]
  • Rates of hospitalization resulting from asthma, ages 0–4 years (Department of Health) [New York]

Birth Related

  • Teen birthrate (Kids Count) [Hawaii]
  • Percentage of low-birthweight births (Department of Health) [New York]
  • Percentage of women with late or no prenatal care (Department of Health) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of low-birthweight infants (Department of Health) [Rhode Island]
  • Infant mortality rate (Department of Health) [Rhode Island]

Health Status

  • Percentage of children in group care receiving nutritious breakfasts (Department of Education, USDA) [Hawaii]
  • Percentage of children with health insurance (Kids Count) [Hawaii, Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of children with history of lead poisoning (Department of Health, lead screening data) [Rhode Island]

Social/Economic Related Indicators

  • Percentage of children/youth in poverty (Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance) [New York]
  • Child poverty rate (Kids Count) [Hawaii]
  • Percentage of children (ages 0 - 4) in families receiving welfare (Department of Social Welfare) [Vermont]
  • Percentage of children receiving public assistance (Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance) [New York]
  • Percentage of children receiving food stamps (Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance) [New York, Rhode Island]
  • Number of centers participating in USDA food programs (Department of Education, USDA) [Hawaii]

Educational Program Participation and Developmental Indicators

Participation in Early Interventions

  • Percentage of children (ages 0-3) receiving early intervention (Department of Health and Social Services) [Delaware]
  • Participation rate of eligible 4-year-olds in Head Start & early child assistance programs (Department of Education) [Delaware]
  • Number/percentage of children enrolled in Head Start (Head Start) [Maryland]
  • Number/percentage of children enrolled in infants & toddlers program (Department of Education) [Maryland]
  • Percentage of children in early intervention (Department of Health) [New York]
  • Percentage of children enrolled in preschool special education (Department of Education) [New York]
  • Percentage of 4-year-olds enrolled in licensed/registered early childhood programs (Office Children & Family Services) [New York]
  • Percentage of children in full-day kindergarten programs (Department of Education) [Rhode Island]

Family Involvement

  • Percentage of parents actively involved in children’s learning/education (ECFE, School Readiness, Head Start) [Minnesota]
  • Percentage of families with parenting knowledge and skills to anticipate and meet a child’s developmental needs (ECFE, School Readiness, Head Start) [Minnesota]

Testing and Grade Retention

  • Percentage of third graders scoring in 4th quartile on basic skills math, reading, & language (Department of Education) [West Virginia]
  • Percentage of third graders scoring in 1st quartile on basic skills math, reading, & language (Department of Education) [West Virginia]
  • Number/percentage of students scoring B average or better across 6 domains combined on the pre-kindergarten assessment (evaluation & assessment) [Utah]
  • Percentage of children "ready" for kindergarten, as judged by teachers (kindergarten teacher survey) [Vermont]
  • Percentage of children retained by the end of first grade (Department of Education) [West Virginia]
  • Percentage of children retained at least once prior to grade 4 (Department of Education) [West Virginia]

Physical Development

  • Percentage of children with hearing and vision problems at time of entry into kindergarten (early childhood screening) [Minnesota]

Social Development/Language/Communication

  • Percentage of children showing individual developmentally appropriate progress in all areas of their development (early childhood screening, IFSP) [Minnesota]

Cognitive Development

  • Percentage of children showing individual developmentally appropriate progress in all areas of their development (early childhood screening, IFSP) [Minnesota]

Childcare

Quality of Care Indicators

Licensing, Accreditation, and Regulation

  • Number of licensed centers (Childcare Services Division) [Vermont]
  • Number of registered family day care homes (Childcare Services Division) [Vermont]
  • Number of nationally accredited early childcare and education sites (National Association for the Education of Young Children) [Delaware]
  • Number of nationally accredited family childcare homes (NAEYC) [Delaware]
  • Number of accredited preschools (NAEYC) [Hawaii]
  • Number of regulated childcare centers and family care homes (licensing files) [Hawaii]
  • Number of accredited facilities (Office of Children & Family Services) [New York]
  • Number of regulated/licensed programs (Office of Children & Family Services) [New York]
  • Number of licensed slots compared to the number of children with working parents, planned (Census Bureau) [Utah]
  • Percentage of childcare center slots in accredited programs (Department of Human Services) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of family childcare slots in accredited programs (Department of Human Services) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of Head Start slots meeting quality standards (Head Start) [Rhode Island]
  • Number of family childcare associations (Governor’s Cabinet on Children & Families) [West Virginia]
  • Number of nationally accredited early childhood programs (Governor’s Cabinet on Children & Families) [West Virginia]
  • Number of nationally accredited family childcare homes & facilities (Governor’s Cabinet on Children & Families) [West Virginia]

Staffing Patterns and Characteristics

  • Percentage of parents using quality childcare arrangements as defined by training levels, experience & accreditation (CCR&R) [Minnesota]
  • Percentage of childcare slots in programs with low staff turnover rates (rate survey) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of childcare center staff with early childhood education degree (rate survey) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of family childcare staff with early childhood training (rate survey) [Rhode Island]

Safety

  • Percentage of early care and education slots in programs without health and safety violations (Department of Children, Youth, Families, childcare licensing) [Rhode Island]
  • Number of serious injuries (abuse) in childcare (Childcare Services Division) [Vermont]

Accessibility of Care Indicators

Availability

  • Number of slots in regulated childcare centers and family care homes (licensing files) [Hawaii]
  • Number of licensed childcare spaces available for every 100 children of working parents (CCR&R) [Minnesota]
  • Number of early care and education slots per 100 children from birth to age 3 (Department of Human Services) [Rhode Island]
  • Number of early care and education slots per 100 children ages 3-5 years (Department of Human Services) [Rhode Island]
  • Number of early parent education programs (birth though 2 years) (Governor’s Cabinet on Children & Families) [West Virginia]
  • Number of starting points family resource centers (birth through 8 years) (Governor’s Cabinet on Children & Families) [West Virginia]
  • Number and rate of before/after school programs per 1,00 low income children with working parents (Census Bureau) [Utah]
  • Number of children on Head Start waiting list (Head Start) [Hawaii]
  • Estimated percentage that need childcare (Childcare Services Division) [Vermont]

Participation

  • Percentage of low-income children enrolled in comprehensive childcare programs or Head Start (Department of Human Services) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of children enrolled in early care and education programs the year prior to school entry (SALT survey) [Rhode Island]
  • Percentage of "at-risk" children enrolled in early care and education programs prior to school entry (administrative databases) [Rhode Island]
  • Number of children in Head Start programs (Head Start) [Hawaii]

Affordability of Care Indicators

General Costs

  • Average weekly rate (annual market rate survey) [Vermont]
  • Subsidized weekly rate (Childcare Services Division) [Vermont]
  • Percentage of families paying more than 10 percent of their income for childcare (CCR&R) [Minnesota]

Subsidy Related

  • Number of subsidized slots (Office of Children & Family Services) [New York]
  • Percentage of families receiving childcare subsidy support (Department of Health and Social Services) [Delaware]
  • Number of children receiving subsidized care in regulated homes (Department of Human Services) [Hawaii]
  • Number of children receiving subsidized care in family childcare homes (Department of Human Services) [Hawaii]
  • Percentage of families on childcare subsidies (Office of Children & Family Services) [New York]
  • Percentage of licensed childcare providers who are willing to care for children receiving childcare assistance (CCR&R) [Minnesota]
  • Percentage of families receiving childcare assistance (CCR&R) [Minnesota]
  • Percentage income-eligible families using childcare subsidies (Department of Human Services) [Rhode Island]

The Starting Points Sites

Sara Watson of the Finance Project described the Carnegie Corporation of New York’s Starting Points sites. She began by describing the Starting Points initiative, which aims to support the implementation of programs that address some of the needs identified in Carnegie’s Starting Points report on early childhood issues.

Watson distributed a handout, reproduced below, that provided examples of some of the indicators that are under consideration in the Starting Points sites. (In supplying a copy for this summary, Watson stressed the exemplary quality of the indicators listed, cautioning that some sites have more extensive activities than are revealed by this list and also that, because indicators are in development, some on the list may not be realized.)

Watson noted that these indicators fall into all four of Kagan’s buckets, but in some cases, Starting Points sites take a different approach than do the ASPE-supported projects. Watson commented on the importance of positive measures.

 

Table 1:
School Readiness and Childcare Indicators Among Selected Starting Points Sites
Indicator Description (actual or proposed) Data (or Indicator) Source
Pittsburgh
The percentage of children, ages zero to five years, enrolled in family centers in Allegheny County meeting the appropriate developmental targets for their chronological ages. Early Learning Accomplishment Profile/LAP and Denver II Screening Tool
San Francisco
Increase childcare space availability San Francisco Starting Points Initiative, "Children Are Ready and Able to Learn"
Increase eligible children receiving childcare subsidies Same
Increase proportion of kindergartners who attended childcare Same
North Carolina
Smart Start Evaluation Indicators
Status of childcare arrangements, child health, family satisfaction with childcare Smart Start Family Questionnaire
Children’s motor, language, social and cognitive skills Kindergarten Teacher Checklist
Child health data Kindergarten Health Assessment
Childcare professionals’ perceptions of skills and need for training in child development, childcare environment, curriculum, learning and professionalism Self-Assessment for Child Care Professionals
Childcare center director, teacher and child characteristics Childcare Center Director Interview
Classroom practices Childcare Center Provider Form
Childcare teacher demographics Childcare Center Provider Form
Childcare provider interactions with children, measuring sensitivity, harshness, detachment and permissiveness Caregiver Interaction Scale
Family childcare provider status Family Child Care Provider Interview
Demographic, education and work information for families with children in family childcare Survey of Families with Children in NC Family Childcare Homes
Smart Start Program Performance Standards
All teachers working in early childhood programs have an associates or bachelors degree in early childhood education or child development, or they are enrolled in a degree program leading towards the attainment of such a degree. Workforce Study, TEACH
Every early childhood program has a three-star rated license and/or is nationally accredited or is progressing towards the attainment of a three star rated license and/or national accreditation. State agencies, TEACH
Teachers working directly with children in early childhood programs are compensated at a rate that is comparable to teaching staff with comparable education in public schools (measured at the county median). Workforce Study, TEACH
A sufficient supply of childcare exists that is appropriate for the individual child and accessible to families who need and want it. Families are able to find and access early childhood programs that are needed and appropriate for the individual family’s need. State agencies
At least 75 percent of young children (0-5) living in families needing childcare and earning less than 75 percent of the county median income will receive subsidized early care and education services. State agencies
No family will have to pay more than 10 percent of their gross income for childcare. State agencies, parent and other surveys
All young children receiving Smart Start services will have a source of primary medical and dental care, with access to comprehensive, integrated, specialized care (including mental health services) as necessary. All care, including preventive screenings, will be coordinated with the child’s family and primary healthcare provider. Direct service provider
Childcare environments are safe and healthy for all children in care. State agencies
To meet the diverse needs of families, a variety of family support services appropriate for individual children and families are available and accessible. State agencies, schools, surveys
Family support services are coordinated with and support the development of health and quality early childhood education services. Direct service provider
Five Star Childcare License
Quality assessments of childcare centers Rating scale using

Infant/Toddler Environment Rating Scale 
Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale
North Carolina Early Childhood Administrator Credential
North Carolina Early Childhood Credential

School-Age Care Environment Rating Scale

Baltimore (Maryland)
School readiness
Maryland Model for School Readiness: ongoing assessment (proposed) Work Sampling System examining (1) social and personal; (2) language and literacy; (3) mathematical thinking; (4) scientific thinking; (5) social studies; (6) the arts; and (7) physical development domains
Number of children entering kindergarten that attended preschool Proposed – Recommended Results Indicators of Child and Family Well-Being Report
Number of children enrolled in early intervention programs Same
Number of low-income children in Head Start or pre-kindergarten programs Same
Childcare
Child population Maryland Committee for Children/U.S. Bureau of the Census, etc.
Childcare costs as compared to other major household expenses MCC/Maryland state agencies
Average weekly cost of full-time childcare Same
Children’s programs by type with capacity/ enrollment Same
Percentage of family care providers and childcare centers willing to care for subsidized children Same
Number of family providers and centers who serve/have served children with special needs Same
Annual wage rate information for public school and childcare staff Same
Density of family providers and center programs by jurisdiction, census tract Same
Number of children 0-5 years of age per regulated childcare space Same
Past and anticipated growth patterns for family/center providers Same
Children served by age Same
Children served by locational preference for care Same
Children served by type of care preferred Same
Reason childcare is needed Same
Full-time or part-time care needs of children served Same

Dividing into Work Groups

The participants then broke into two groups; one focused on childcare and the other on school readiness. Discussion in these two groups helped frame the issues to be covered during Friday’s sessions.