July 8, 2011

In this Issue:

  1. RTT-ELC Competition - Opportunity for Public Input Ends July 11th at 5:00 PM EDT
      Source: U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services - July 1, 2011
  2. Promise Neighborhoods - Notice Inviting Applications
      Source: U.S. Department of Education - July 6, 2011
  3. Outcomes for Children Served through IDEA's Early Childhood Programs
      Source: Early Childhood Outcomes Center - Retrieved July 5, 2011
  4. Policy Letters from the Office of Special Education Programs - 4th Quarter 2010
      Source: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs - Retrieved July 8, 2011
  5. Early Care and Education State Budget Actions FY 2011
      Source: National Conference of State Legislatures - Retrieved July 5, 2011
  6. Improving Public Financing For Early Learning Programs
      Source: National Institute for Early Education Research - Retrieved June 24, 2011
  7. America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2011
      Source: Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics - Retrieved July 8, 2011
  8. What Works for Early Language and Literacy Fact Sheet
      Source: Child Trends - Retrieved July 6, 2011
  9. Two New "CELLpops" for Parents of Preschoolers
      Source: Center for Early Literacy Learning - June 28, 2011
  10. Trends in the Use of Standardized Tools for Developmental Screening in Early Childhood: 2002-2009
      Source: Pediatrics - Retrieved July 8, 2011

1. RTT-ELC Competition - Opportunity for Public Input Ends July 11th at 5:00 PM EDT

Source: U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services - July 1, 2011

The U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Health and Human Services (HHS) have announced an opportunity for the public to provide input on the draft requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions for the Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) Program. The draft document is being posted for public input from July 1, 2011 until 5:00 PM EDT on July 11, 2011. All interested parties are invited to share their thoughts. The direct link to the public input site is http://www.ed.gov/early-learning/elc-draft-summary. The final RTT-ELC requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions will be published in a Notice Inviting Applications in the Federal Register later this summer.

2. Promise Neighborhoods - Notice Inviting Applications

Source: U.S. Department of Education - July 6, 2011

On July 6, 2011, the U.S. Department of Education published a notice inviting applications for the second phase of the Promise Neighborhoods program, including new implementation grants and a second round of planning grants, totaling $30 million. Promise Neighborhoods grants are meant to provide support for comprehensive services ranging from early learning to college and career, including programs to improve the health, safety, and stability of neighborhoods, as well as to enhance the involvement of families in their children's learning. Applications are due on September 6, 2011. Several webinars will be held for potential applicants. For additional information, go to http://www2.ed.gov/programs/promiseneighborhoods/index.html

3. Outcomes for Children Served through IDEA's Early Childhood Programs

Source: Early Childhood Outcomes Center - Retrieved July 5, 2011

The Early Childhood Outcomes Center has published a summary of recent data suggesting that high percentages of children birth through 5 years of age who receive services through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act's early childhood programs show greater than expected developmental progress and many are exiting the program functioning within age expectations. Outcomes for Children Served through IDEA's Early Childhood Programs (2011) is available at http://ectacenter.org/~pdfs/eco/outcomesforchildrenfinal.pdf

4. Policy Letters from the Office of Special Education Programs - 4th Quarter 2010

Source: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs - Retrieved July 8, 2011

Policy letters of clarification related to the education of infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities from the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) dated October 1, 2010 through December 31, 2010 are now available online at http://www2.ed.gov/policy/speced/guid/idea/letters/2010-4/index.html. On June 24, 2011, the Federal Register published a list of these letters with summaries included - see http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-06-24/html/2011-15922.htm. A subset of OSEP policy letters that specifically address Part C and Section 619 of the IDEA can be accessed via the NECTAC Web site at http://www.nectac.org/idea/clarfctnltrs.asp.

5. Early Care and Education State Budget Actions FY 2011

Source: National Conference of State Legislatures - Retrieved July 5, 2011

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) recently released Early Care and Education State Budget Actions FY 2011, which is based on data compiled from an annual survey of state fiscal decisions in early care and education policy and programs, including child care, prekindergarten, home visiting and other related early childhood programs. Findings show that state appropriations from FY 2010 to FY 2011 were generally stable, with increases to prekindergarten, home visiting and other early childhood initiatives and a 2 percent decrease to child care. To learn more, go to http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/human-services/early-care-and-education-state-budget-actions-fy20.aspx3. Highlights from the report are available at http://www.ncsl.org/documents/cyf/earlycareed2011budgetactions.pdf

6. Improving Public Financing For Early Learning Programs

Source: National Institute for Early Education Research - Retrieved June 24, 2011

Funding for early care and education programs varies from program to program, across states, and across levels of government. The National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) recently published a policy brief that examines different sources and models of public financing of early care and education and makes recommendations for improving upon what currently exists, in order to remove barriers to increasing program access and quality. Improving Public Financing For Early Learning Programs: NIEER Policy Brief, Issue 23 (2011), by W. Steven Barnett and Jason T. Hustedt, is available at http://nieer.org/resources/policybriefs/24.pdf

7. America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2011

Source: Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics - Retrieved July 8, 2011

The Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics recently published America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2011 (July 2011), its annual report on the well-being of children and families in the United States across a range of domains, including family and social environment, economic circumstances, health care, physical environment and safety, behavior, education, and health. The report is available online at http://childstats.gov/americaschildren/index.asp

8. What Works for Early Language and Literacy Fact Sheet

Source: Child Trends - Retrieved July 6, 2011

Child Trends recently reviewed findings from 15 random assignment experimental evaluations of literacy and language programs and published a new fact sheet summarizing what they learned. What Works for Early Language and Literacy: Lessons from Experimental Evaluations of Programs and Intervention Strategies (2011), by Alison Chrisler and Thomson Ling, finds that some of the programs were shown to significantly improve certain aspects of early learning, while others did not. It is available at http://www.childtrends.org/Files//Child_Trends-2011_06_10_FS_WWLanguage.pdf

9. Two New "CELLpops" for Parents of Preschoolers

Source: Center for Early Literacy Learning - June 28, 2011

The Center for Early Literacy Learning (CELL) has released two new "CELLpops" for parents of preschoolers. The CELLpops are interactive web versions of CELL mini-posters that parents can use with their children to promote early literacy learning. Grocery Shopping and Local Library Visits each provide families with fun and easy ways to incorporate literacy activities into grocery shopping routines or a visit to the library. The CELLpops and CELL mini posters are available at http://www.earlyliteracylearning.org/ta_cell_pop1.php.

CELL is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs Research to Practice Division and is a major initiative of the Center for Evidence-Based Practices at the Orelena Hawks Puckett Institute.

10. Trends in the Use of Standardized Tools for Developmental Screening in Early Childhood: 2002-2009

Source: Pediatrics - Retrieved July 8, 2011

Findings from a new study show that pediatricians' use of standardized screening tools increased from 23% to 48% between 2002 and 2009, which is good news considering the importance of developmental screening in early identification, evaluation, and intervention. However, the percentage remains less than half of respondents who work with children under the age of 3, suggesting that additional research needs to be done to identify barriers to the use of standardized screening tools in practice. An abstract is available at http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2011/06/23/peds.2010-2180.abstract

Full citation: Radecki, L., Sand-Loud, N., O'Connor, K. G., Sharp, S., Olson, L. M. (2011). Trends in the Use of Standardized Tools for Developmental Screening in Early Childhood: 2002-2009. Pediatrics. Published online June 27, 2011. doi: 10.1542/peds.2010-2180