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.

Schools can improve the readiness of young children by making connections with local child care providers and preschools by creating policies that ensure smooth transitions to kindergarten.  Schools must be ready to address the diverse needs of the children and families in their community and be committed to the success of every child. 



Making Dollars Follow Sense: Financing Early Childhood Mental Health Services to Promote Healthy Social and Emotional Development in Young Children (August 2002). New York, NY: Kay Johnson, Jane Knitzer and Roxane Kaufmann, National Center for Children in Poverty.

Click here to download or order this publication.


Mental Health Services for Children: An Overview (June 2002). Washington, DC: Holly Kenny, Leah Oliver and Julie Poppe, National Conference of State Legislatures.

Click here to download or order this publication.



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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