Early Childhood Education Assessment (ECEA)
The Early Childhood Education Assessment (ECEA) SCASS works to enhance young children's learning and school success from birth through 3rd grade. ECEA focuses on helping states design and implement standards for children's learning and development through early childhood program quality, child and program assessments, data systems, and accountability initiatives for early education, kindergarten and primary grade programs.
The ECEA SCASS supports successful child and teacher development and learning through a state-based system approach that is comprehensive, integrated and aligned to early childhood needs. ECEA believes that state-based systems should be comprised of early learning standards, child assessments, and program evaluation; connected to early childhood curricula, instruction and professional development; and committed to tracking progress for children, programs, and the system.
Most recently, ECEA members have developed strategies for building unified approaches to standards, assessments, data systems and professional development for all forms of publicly-funded early care and education programs. This work includes, but is not limited to, state pre-k, child care, Head Start/Early Head Start, services for young children with disabilities and home visitation programs. The ECEA SCASS has also co-sponsored conferences with the Council's English Language Learner SCASS, the BUILD Project and the National Association of Early Childhood Specialists in state education agencies.
ECEA efforts focus on three main initiatives:
- Support sharing materials, strategies and lessons from Early Learning Challenge-funded states on issues of child & program standards, assessments, data systems, and program improvement with the ECEA-SCASS and all other states.
- Promote the development of state kindergarten entry assessments as one component in a system of ongoing child and program assessments that are used to improve teaching and learning, guide professional development and inform parents and policymakers.
- Promote dialogue between senior state early childhood program leaders and leaders of key education reform initiatives that have significant implications for young children, including implementation of the Common Core Standards and related assessment initiatives, state longitudinal data systems, and new uses of technology.
ECEA Collaborative Advisor: Thomas Schultz
Tom Schultz is project director for Early Childhood Initiatives at CCSSO in Washington, DC. Prior to joining the Council, Dr. Schultz worked on issues of early childhood standards, assessments, and accountability at the Pew Charitable Trusts, the Head Start Bureau and the National Association of State Boards of Education.
Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Wyoming