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.



Fourth National Meeting

This was the Fourth National Meeting of the 17-state initiative to use child well-being indicators to improve school readiness and ensure early school success. Over the course of the Initiative, states will work individually and collectively to develop a comprehensive set of measures to monitor the physical, social, emotional, cognitive, and economic well-being of young children. Indicators will reflect state investments in programs and policies for young children and families as well as child outcomes. States will develop policy goals and communications strategies to improve school readiness in their states.


Meeting Objectives:

  • To explore and develop policy strategies for early childhood programs and systems.
  • To highlight state work on school readiness collaboration and policy issues.
  • To expand knowledge in two critical areas: the use of Medicaid to improve health and child development and strategies to support the transition to kindergarten.
  • To provide opportunities for participants to meet in state and cross-state teams to apply information from experts and initiative colleagues to their own state work.
  • To be briefed on outcomes from the Hart Research survey of early elementary professionals' views on school readiness.



© 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