NC Star Rated License Program Quality Measurement Development

North Carolina is leading a Consortium of states to develop a new measure for use in a Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System (TQRIS). The Consortium, led by faculty from the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, working with collaborators in Delaware, Kentucky and Illinois, is developing this new measure to allow for a broader understanding of quality in early care and education programs than is captured with measures currently in use. Although the conceptualization of items and measurement process has a foundation in children's experiences, both classroom and program practices known to promote optimal development and learning will be the focus of the measure; current measurement approaches often emphasize the classroom as the unit of analysis with little attention to the programmatic systems that underlie classroom performance. 

The new measure is grounded in Early Learning and Development Standards as well as current child development theory and research, leading to a focus on practices that support important developmental outcomes valued across multiple States. It includes administrative/program level items; items across infant, toddler, preschool age classrooms; and will be relevant for the broad range of programs included in TQRISs, including centers, family child care homes, public school programs, religious-affiliated programs, and Head Start. The measure is designed to take into consideration multiple sources of evidence from programs, teachers, and classrooms, through multiple methods of data collection including program self-assessment/document review, interviews, and observations and it will allow for continuous improvement over time. Programs will submit materials for document review prior to a verification and observation visit. The program visit will include observations in classrooms across the age ranges within each program, interviews with directors and teachers, and additional document review. The assessment will result in a program level portrait showing program strengths and areas for improvement. Read more about this project.

The RTT-ELC grant supported this project through December 2016 after which other sources of funding will provide support to complete the new measure.

RTT-ELC Reform Area: High Quality Accountable Programs