The U.S. Department of Education recently released a report that shows Race to the Top—Early Learning Challenge states are rapidly improving the quality of early learning programs while enrolling more children, especially from low- and moderate income families, in the highest-quality programs.
What’s more, thousands more children are receiving health screenings to help detect medical or developmental issues earlier, the report shows. The report comes from the annual performance reviews for the 20 states that have received more than $1 billion in Early Learning Challenge grants since 2011. These reports capture the successes achieved and obstacles overcome by states in the last year.
Some of the highlights from the report include:
- More than 72,000 early learning and development programs are now evaluated under their states’ Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (TQRIS) – an 87 percent increase since the states applied for their grants.
- Nearly 14,000 programs are in the highest quality tiers of their states’ rating system – a 63 percent increase since the states applied for their grants.
- Significantly more children with high needs are enrolled in programs in the highest quality tiers of their states’ rating system.
- More than 200,000 children with high needs are enrolled in highest rated state-funded preschool programs.
- Nearly 230,000 children with high needs are enrolled in child care programs that receive federal child care subsidy funds and are in the highest tiers.
- More than 150,000 children with high needs are enrolled in Head Start/Early Head Start programs in the highest tiers.
Read the full report here.