July 17, 2015

In this Issue:

  1. Policy Letter on Services to Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
      Source: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs - July 7, 2015
  2. How Children's Social Competence Impacts Their Well-Being in Adulthood
      Source: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation - July 17, 2015
  3. Elevating Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) Communications
      Source: Child Trends - July 17, 2015
  4. Measuring Infant/Toddler Language Development
      Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation - July 17, 2015
  5. Home Visit and Classroom Quality in Early Head Start
      Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation - July 17, 2015

1. Policy Letter on Services to Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Source: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs - July 7, 2015

A new Dear Colleague Letter (July 6, 2015) from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) addresses concerns about services for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The letter clarifies requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) related to the provision of services for children with disabilities, including children with ASD. OSEP Memos, Dear Colleague Letters and Policy Letters are made publicly available online. A subset of OSEP guidance documents related to the early childhood provisions of the IDEA (Part C and Part B, Section 619) can be accessed on the ECTA Center Web site.

2. How Children's Social Competence Impacts Their Well-Being in Adulthood

Source: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation - July 17, 2015

New research findings suggest that kindergarten children who were rated by their teachers as demonstrating greater social competence skills (resolves peer problems, listens to others, shares materials, cooperates and is helpful) in kindergarten were more likely to attain higher education and well-paying jobs in adulthood. Children rated as demonstrating weaker social competency skills were found to be more likely to drop out of high school, abuse drugs and alcohol, and need government assistance. A summary of the study, How Children's Social Competence Impacts Their Well-Being in Adulthood (July 2015), provides an overview of major findings and implications for further action. The study was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and published in the American Journal of Public Health (July 2015).

3. Elevating Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) Communications

Source: Child Trends - July 17, 2015

To date, 39 states have implemented quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS) to rate and improve child care and early education programs for children birth to age five. The success of a state QRIS depends on effective outreach and engagement with a range of stakeholders. A new report, Elevating Quality Rating and Improvement System Communications: How to Improve Outreach to and Engagement with Providers, Parents, Policymakers, and the Public (July 2015), provides examples of what some what some states are doing to market their QRIS and provides recommendations for other states.

4. Measuring Infant/Toddler Language Development

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation - July 17, 2015

A new brief, Measuring Infant/Toddler Language Development: Lessons Learned About Assessment and Screening Tools (July 2015), explores how well several well-known parent- and staff-reported language screening and assessment tools perform in a low-income Early Head Start population. The brief examines the reliability and validity of the tools and provides suggestions for factors programs should consider when selecting measures of children's development.

5. Home Visit and Classroom Quality in Early Head Start

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation - July 17, 2015

A new report, Early Head Start Home Visits and Classrooms: Stability, Predictors, and Thresholds of Quality (2015), provides a descriptive picture of classroom and home visit quality in Early Head Start. The report also examines associations between quality and child and parenting outcomes, including whether there are threshold effects in these associations.