For the first time, school districts can use county-specific data profiles to understand how many children in their communities are ready for kindergarten, thanks to the 2013 Early Childhood Profiles released today by the Governor's Office of Early Childhood.
These county-by-county reports show readiness indicators like communications skills and physical well-being for children entering school. The reports are designed to provide each county with data to assist in developing local strategies to assure that every child in their community enters kindergarten properly prepared to learn and succeed.
"A child's earliest years play a critical role in future achievements," said Gov. Steve Beshear. "It's vital that we all work together to strengthen the foundation of education and development for our youngest citizens. This tool can help communities assure that every child in the Commonwealth gets the best possible start in life."
The profiles contain results from the kindergarten screener pilot launched in 109 school districts in 2012. It also provides information about participation in publicly funded preschool, Head Start and child care. The reports include information about the quality and availability of child care and the education of the early childhood workforce.
Finally, demographic data is provided representing key indicators of possible barriers to success for young children and their families, as well as participation in public health and social service programs that can help.
"We believe that what gets measured gets done," said Terry Tolan, executive director of the Governor's Office of Early Childhood. "It is our hope that this compilation of data will create local dialogue and inform local action to improve early childhood outcomes."
According to Tolan, the Early Childhood Profile can help change the conversation in each community in Kentucky so that every child will enter school ready to succeed; every parent will know what their child needs to be ready for school; and every community will come together in support of their youngest children.
The Early Childhood Profile was created in partnership with the Kentucky Center for Education and Workforce Statistics, the Kentucky Department of Education, the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet and the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.
The 2013 Early Childhood Profiles can be accessed at http://kidsnow.ky.gov/School%20Readiness/Pages/profiles.aspx.
For more information on early childhood education, visit http://kidsnow.ky.gov.