January 31, 2019

In this Issue:

  1. Invitation to Comment: Evaluation of Preschool Special Education Practices Efficacy Study
      Source: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences (IES)
  2. Structural Factors Shape the Effects of the Opioid Epidemic on Pregnant Women and Infants
      Source: JAMA Network
  3. Early Education Essentials: Illustrations of Strong Organizational Practices
      Source: The Ounce & the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research

1. Invitation to Comment: Evaluation of Preschool Special Education Practices Efficacy Study

Source: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences (IES)

The U.S. Department of Education is inviting comments about reinstating previously approved data collection to support an efficacy study of an instructional framework designed to address the needs of all preschool children in inclusive classrooms. The study is part of the Evaluation of Preschool Special Education Practices (EPSEP), and its main objective is to measure whether the Instructionally Enhanced Pyramid Model (IEPM) can be implemented with fidelity in inclusive preschool classrooms. Comments must be received by April 1, 2019. To learn more, see the Federal Register Notice.

2. Structural Factors Shape the Effects of the Opioid Epidemic on Pregnant Women and Infants

Source: JAMA Network

In the latest issue of JAMA, (January 2019, Volume 321, Issue 4), a study found that higher levels of unemployment rates were associated with higher rates of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS), a condition attributed to the exposure of opioids during pregnancy. The researchers also found a significant association between counties that had a shortage of mental health professionals and higher rates of NAS. The findings suggest that to significantly address the impact of opioid use on neonates and their families, research and policy must reach beyond clinics and into community infrastructure, such as local economic and mental health conditions.

3. Early Education Essentials: Illustrations of Strong Organizational Practices

Source: The Ounce & the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research

A recent report from the Ounce and the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research (December 2018) poses the question, "What do strong organizational conditions look like in early childhood education (ECE) settings?" and outlines the following six essentials necessary for high-quality ECE programs. Comparison tables of strong versus weak essentials are provided, along with a summary, appendix, and references.

  1. Effective instructional leaders
  2. Collaborative teachers
  3. Involved families
  4. Supportive environment
  5. Ambitious instruction
  6. Parent voice