The assessment of children in the early years and early grades has always been a controversial topic, but now the issue is moving to the forefront of early education debates. Assessment is a pivotal piece of the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge, and the larger education debates on evaluating teachers are tied to data on student achievement. More states are developing and implementing kindergarten entry assessments as well as exploring how to assess children in the early grades to determine their teacher’s ability to educate them at high levels.
In December, the National Association for the Education of Young Children released a guide for states on developing kindergarten-readiness and other large-scale assessment systems. The paper states, “Early childhood assessment systems, properly developed and implemented, can contribute greatly to the success of early childhood programs.”
For this podcast, we spoke with Kyle Snow, senior scholar and director of the Center for Applied Research at the NAEYC. We discussed standardized assessment (a topic that often creates a stir in the early childhood community) kindergarten-entry assessment and program evaluation and accountability.
“Evaluation and accountability are here to stay,” Snow says. “I think actually they are critically important. After all we need to know, we owe it to the children we are serving to know, that what we are doing is a positive thing for them because if it’s not, well then we are wasting time and money going in the wrong direction.”
Early Ed Watch Podcast – January 23, 2012
Assessing Young Children, Birth Through Third Grade
With our guest Kyle Snow, senior scholar and director of the Center for Applied Research at the NAEYC.
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