Studies show that educational achievement gaps already exist at Kindergarten entry.  Children from low-income families are more likely to start school with limited language skills, health problems and social and emotional problems that interfere with learning.  The larger the gap at school entry, the harder it is to close.

Language proficiency is a key predictor of school success. Early literacy skills (size of vocabulary, recognizing letters, understanding letter and sound relationships) at kindergarten entry are good predictors of children's reading abilities throughout their educational careers. Language and literacy skills enable children to develop cognitive skills and knowledge and to interact effectively with peers and adults.



The Child Care Bureau

The Child Care Bureau is dedicated to enhancing the quality, affordability, and availability of child care for all families. The Child Care Bureau administers federal funds to states, territories, and tribes to assist low-income families in accessing quality child care for children when the parents work or participate in education or training.


National Institute for Early Education Research

The National Institute for Early Education Research supports early childhood education initiatives by providing objective, nonpartisan information based on research.

The goal of NIEER is to produce and communicate the knowledge base required to ensure that every American child can receive a good education at ages three and four. The Institute seeks to provide policy makers with timely information addressing the practical problems they face. The Institute offers independent research-based advice and technical assistance to four primary groups: policy makers, journalists, researchers, and educators.


Education Week-No Small Change, Targeting Money Toward Student Performance

This national report by Education Week focuses on the efforts to link funding to educational outcomes, tracks student achievement across the 50 states and charts progress of states' education systems.


ECS Online Interactive Pre-kindergarten Database

The Education Commission of the States� Online Interactive Pre-kindergarten Database provides state-by-state information and comparisons on pre-k programs, including funding, history, staff requirements and eligibility.


The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is the nation�s largest organization of early childhood educators and others dedicated to improving the quality of programs for children from birth through third grade.


National Institute on Early Childhood Development and Education

The Early Childhood Institute (ECI) sponsors comprehensive and challenging research in order to help ensure that America's young children are successful in school and beyond -- and to enhance their quality of life and that of their families.


Smart Start

Smart Start is North Carolina's nationally recognized and award-winning early childhood initiative designed to ensure that young children enter school healthy and ready to succeed.


U.S. Department of Education: Early Childhood

The U.S. Department of Education�s early childhood resources page offers information on federal programs, initiatives, and research. Information is provided on the Good Start, Grow Smart program, the Early Reading First program, and the White House Summit on Early Childhood Cognitive Development.


Wellesley Child Care Research Partnership

The Wellesley Child Care Research Partnership brings together child care researchers, state and local child care administrators, agencies, specialists, and others to carry out research that improves social welfare and child care policy and the way in which that policy is administered.



© 2005, School Readiness Indicators Initiative
One Union Station Providence, RI 02903 401.351.9400 fax 401.351.1758
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The School Readiness Indicators Initiative is supported by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Ford Foundation.
The 17-state initiative is managed by Rhode Island KIDS COUNT