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Improving early childhood caregiver quality and child outcomes through low-intensity classroom observation and individualized instructional feedback

Despite the existing evidence of the impact of early care and education (ECE) quality programs, rigorous empirical research demonstrating effective strategies for raising quality in existing ECE programs is limited - especially for light touch strategies implemented on a large scale. To expand the research base and help inform federal and state agencies as they implement ECE quality improvement strategies, this study investigates the effects of one particular strategy - providing individualized instructional feedback to preschool teachers on the basis of classroom observations. The current study uses an experimental design to identify treatment effects - exploiting the random selection process in which preschool teachers were identified to receive observations and feedback from work of the Ohio Department of Education. Findings from the current study provide evidence that low-intensity quality improvement strategies implemented on a wide scale can be one effective solution for raising quality in ECE environments. The instructional feedback was effective in raising the quality of early language and literacy classroom practices for less experienced ECE teachers, although no effects were observed for more experienced preschool teachers. In addition, differential effects were not driven by new teachers having more room for improvement than more experienced teachers since there were no differences in instructional quality between new and experienced control group teachers. The current study also found evidence of small changes in provider level quality. In addition, among new teachers, small, positive effects were found for children's preschool rhyming skills. Small, positive effects on children's picture naming skills and early language and literacy school readiness measured at kindergarten entry approached statistical significance for new teachers. No effects on children's alliteration skills were identified. (author abstract)
Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States
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Related resources include summaries, versions, measures (instruments), or other resources in which the current document plays a part. Research products funded by the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation are related to their project records.

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