The Annie E. Casey Foundation has released their 2013 Kids Count Data Book. The book includes national and state-by-state data on the well-being of children. The Data Book ranks states in four domains: Economic Well-Being, Education, Health, and Family and Community.
New Video to Improve Early Recognition of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Very Young Children
The Kennedy Krieger Institute and Maryland Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have published a free online video to improve the recognition of the early signs of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) among pediatricians, parents and early intervention providers. Bringing the Early Signs of Autism Spectrum Disorders Into Focus (2013, runtime 9:03 minutes) consists of six video clips that compare toddlers with no signs of ASD to toddlers with early signs of ASD and includes an explanation of how the specific behaviors exhibited by each child are either suggestive of ASD or typical child development.
Leading for Early Success: Building School Principals' Capacity to Lead High-Quality Early Education
According to a new paper by the National Governors Association (NGA), effective school leadership and access to high-quality early education are two of the most important determinants of educational outcomes. Leading for Early Success: Building School Principals' Capacity to Lead High-Quality Early Education (2013) makes the case for why governors should build elementary school principals' capacity to promote high-quality early education and outlines specific state policy strategies to accomplish this goal. It includes a case study highlighting how Illinois is including early learning content in the principal preparation process.
Three New "Backpack Connection" Resources for Teachers and Families to Help Young Children Develop Social Emotional Skills
The Technical Assistance Center on Social Emotional Intervention for Young Children (TACSEI) recently added several new items to its Backpack Connection Series. The first two are in the "Addressing Behaviors" section of the series and the third one is in the "Routines and Schedules section. The Backpack Connection Series provides a way for teachers and parents/caregivers to work together to help young children develop social emotional skills and reduce challenging behavior. Teachers can send a handout home in each child's backpack when a new strategy or skill is introduced to the class. Each handout provides information to help parents stay informed about what their child is learning at school and specific ideas on how to use the strategy or skill at home.
Strategies and Recommendations for Improving Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health (I-ECMH) Policy and Services
ZERO TO THREE (ZTT) recently released the paper Nurturing Change: State Strategies for Improving Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health, which offers an in-depth look at a few states' approaches to addressing I-ECMH access, delivery, financing, evidence base, and system-level issues. This paper is a follow-up to their 2012 paper, Making It Happen: Overcoming Barriers to Providing Infant-Early Childhood Mental Health, which examined the scientific evidence supporting I-ECHM policies and offered recommendations for policy improvement at the national level.
Number of States With Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS) Climbs to 38
The QRIS National Learning Network recently released an updated list of state contacts and a map detailing the status of QRIS in states and territories. Both the list and map have been verified and should be used as the official status report on states and territories that have QRIS.
High Cost of Child Care Make Subsidies Critical for Low-Income Families
The Carsey Institute has released a policy brief analyzing the rising cost of child care between 2005 and 2011 and quantifying how much low-income families pay for child care. The brief compares the shares of income spent on child care in 2005 and 2011 among families with children under 6 and mothers who are employed and had child care expenses. The data come from the Census Bureau's Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP).
Academic Pediatric Association (APA) Makes Childhood Poverty Top Concern
The Academic Pediatric Association (APA) Task Force on Childhood Poverty recently issued a Strategic Road Map for addressing childhood poverty as a public health issue. The APA, along with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and the Pediatric Policy Council (PPC) have all advocated for individual issues like Medicaid, CHIP, and food assistance, but prior to the APA's Task Force there had been no sustained focus on childhood poverty. The APA Task Force is working to raise the voice of pediatricians to build public support for policies that will both reduce childhood poverty and address the negative effects of poverty on children's physical and mental health and development.
New Edition of Stepping Stones to Caring for Our Children Released
The National Resource Center for Health and Safety in Child Care and Early Education (NRC) recently released the third edition of Stepping Stones to Caring for Our Children. This publication provides national health and safety performance standards, as well as guidelines, for early care and education programs. The third edition of Stepping Stones (SS3) outlines 138 essential standards intended to reduce the rate of morbidity and mortality in child care and early education settings.
2012 Head Start Program Fact Sheet
The Office of Head Start recently published Head Start Program Facts: Fiscal Year 2012. The fact sheet provides key data on Head Start programs, appropriations, staff qualifications, the characteristics of children and families enrolled in Head Start and the services they received in FY 2012. Throughout the fact sheet, unless otherwise specified, the term "Head Start" refers to the Head Start program as a whole, including: Head Start services to preschool children; Early Head Start services to infants, toddlers, and pregnant women; services to families by American Indian and Alaskan Native (AIAN) programs; and services to families by Migrant and Seasonal Head Start (MSHS) programs.
The State of the World's Children 2013: Children with Disabilities
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) has released its latest annual report examining key issues affecting children around the world. This year's report focuses on children with disabilities, finding that these children are often the most marginalized individuals in the world. The State of the World's Children 2013: Children with Disabilities (May 2013) examines the barriers that deprive children with disabilities of their rights and prevent them from participating fully their communities. The report also discusses key elements of inclusive societies that enable children with disabilities to flourish and make their contribution to the world.
Research Briefs on Applying Implementation Science to Early Care and Education Research and Evaluation
On June 6, 2013, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE) posted the following three research briefs on their Web site. The briefs are meant to help facilitate the use of implementation science frameworks, methodologies, and analysis in early care and education research and program evaluation.