School Readiness Assessments

INTERESTED IN GETTING A SCHOOL READINESS PROFILE ON CHILDREN IN YOUR AREA?

Many schools, foundations and publicly-funded initiatives have an interest in measuring school readiness of children they serve, or plan to serve, as a way to guide future interventions and supports, or to evaluate current investments.  Please contact Lisa Colvig-Amir at 408.247.8319 or via the online form (right) to discuss your particular needs or to obtain a cost effective estimate for a readiness assessment.

WHY DO A SCHOOL READINESS ASSESSMENT?

  • To gather a portrait of children’s readiness for school within the first few weeks of entering kindergarten.
  • Use the data to track county-wide, summative trends in children’s readiness, in order to celebrate successful interventions and/ or to stimulate targeted investments and policy change.
  • Use the data to “look backward” in order to determine which local community, demographic and family factors contribute to children’s readiness, as well as to evaluate the effects of specific readiness-focused interventions.
  • Use the data to “look forward” for ways to positively influence children’s trajectories, including using the data for formative purposes to understand which students or which skill areas across the site or school need the most help in order to narrow the gap between children.  However, the SRA Model’s Kindergarten Observation Form (KOF) or Pre-Kindergarten Observation Form (P-KOF) should never be used to sort or marginalize individual children.  It is also not designed to be a diagnostic screener for developmental issues. 
  • Use the data to build bridges between people working with the same children. The ASR tools and assessment process allow for different partners to move toward a common definition of readiness and shared expectations about which readiness skills matter most, which in turn facilitates identifying the roles to be played and actions required by each partner to enact effective, coordinated community strategies that build the readiness skills of all children.    

WHAT ARE THE ASSESSMENT TOOLS USED IN THE MODEL?  

  •  The Kindergarten Observation Form (KOF) 2011 is a 2-page instrument first developed in San Mateo County by Applied Survey Research and is now copyrighted and used extensively in Bay Area counties.  Only 5 of the 24 items require direct interaction with the child; the rest of the items are observational.  A preschool version of the KOF is also available, called thePre-Kindergarten Observation Form (P-KOF).
  •  The Parent Information Form 2011 is a brief survey completed by children’s parents.  It collects a variety of information about family factors that help us understand the children’s early home and education environments and how these and other factors relate to readiness
  • The Kindergarten Observation Form II 2011 is a 1-page form that gauges the transition of each child in the classroom, according to four indicators of transition.
  • The Kindergarten Teacher Survey on Importance of Readiness Skills 2011 is a survey that gathers teacher opinions about school readiness. A preschool teacher version is also available.

WHAT ARE THE TOP 5 THINGS TO REMEMBER ABOUT THE KOF - AND THE SRA MODEL?   

  • It’s targeted, valid and reliable:   ASR’s School Readiness Assessment Model measures the indicators that matter, which is why the KOF has demonstrated validity with other readiness measures and strongly correlates with 3rd grade test scores.
  • It’s fast and easy: The KOF was designed to work effectively in the context of a busy classroom where teachers face many competing demands for their time. Nineteen of the 24 assessed skills and behaviors focus on things that children demonstrate every day in the classroom.
  • It’s relevant:  The Model’s readiness dimensions are consistent with those found in other frameworks and standards, including the National Education Goals Panel, California’s Kindergarten Standards, the California Preschool Learning Foundations, and the Desired Results Developmental Profile. Educators tell us that the social-emotional readiness of children continues to be an issue for kindergarten teachers, and nearly half of the 24 items we measure are skills related to children’s social-emotional development.
  • It’s useful:   Teachers say that the assessment process helps them take a systematic, holistic “360” view of their incoming students, as well as to pinpoint the areas in which students need extra support.  The Model has also been used to help our partners understand what types of programs and interventions effectively promote readiness. Communities are also beginning to use the data gathered to “bridge the gap” that is often found between the ECE and K-12 systems.
  • It’s engaging:  ASR gathers readiness data and presents them back to our partners in engaging formats that are customized to different audiences, in order to get people talking and thinking, and most importantly, collaborating.

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