In this study, we examined American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) Head Start directors’ perceptions of the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) and critically examined those perceptions to provide insight into the cultural appropriateness of the CLASS in the AI/AN Head Start context. Based on qualitative data from 76 AI/AN Head Start administrators, our findings provide evidence that there are advantages and limitations in using the CLASS in AI/AN Head Start programs. While two of the three broad constructs measured by the CLASS fit well with the experiences of AI/AN early childhood education programs, our data provide evidence of cultural misalignment in the CLASS trainings, some of the CLASS behavioral markers, and the Instructional Support domain. Based upon our findings, we suggest further work be conducted to understand how to modify the instrument or create a new instrument to be better aligned with AI/AN Head Start classroom experiences. (author abstract)
Cultural and practice perspectives on the Classroom Assessment Scoring System: Voices from American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start programs
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