School Readiness

Report

An Evaluation of SEED DC

June, 2016

The nation’s first public, urban, college-prep boarding school emphasizes academic excellence and personal development. A six-year evaluation using SEED’s admission lotteries found that SEED DC raised lottery winners’ test scores but did not increase the on-time graduation rate or reduce teen pregnancy or involvement in the criminal justice system.

With broad support across the political spectrum, states and localities throughout the country are expanding preschool programs for low-income children. While the public will is strong and the experience to date is encouraging, there is a need for firmer evidence on the most cost-effective ways to produce lasting impacts for children, especially when programs operate...

Working Paper
March, 2015
Howard Bloom, Christina Weiland

Using data from the Head Start Impact Study, this paper examines variation in Head Start effects across individual children, policy-relevant subgroups of children, and Head Start centers. It finds that past estimates of the average effect of Head Start programs mask a wide range of relative program effectiveness.

Issue Focus

A Summary of Impact and Implementation Findings from Head Start CARES

April, 2015

This two-page issue focus summarizes the main findings from Head Start CARES, a test of three distinct classroom-based approaches to enhancing children’s social-emotional development: Incredible Years Teacher Training Program, Preschool PATHS (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies), and Tools of the Mind–Play.

Report

Exploratory Findings from the Head Start CARES Demonstration

December, 2014
JoAnn Hsueh, Amy Lowenstein, Pamela Morris, Shira Kolnik Mattera, Michael Bangser

This report suggests that evidence-based approaches can improve 3-year-olds’ social-emotional competence in mixed-age preschool classrooms. While the findings are promising, further research is needed to confirm the results and to better understand how these benefits are generated.

Report

Adapting a Preschool Social-Emotional Curriculum

June, 2014
Michael Fishman, Jessica Wille

In this study, an existing evidence-based curriculum was adapted for use with a special population by focusing on structural, cultural, and language issues. The findings indicate that adaptations can account for a specific population’s needs while staying true to the core principles and components of the program.

Report

National Evaluation of Three Approaches to Improving Preschoolers’ Social and Emotional Competence

June, 2014
Pamela Morris, Shira Kolnik Mattera, Nina Castells, Michael Bangser, Karen Bierman, Cybele Raver

This demonstration tested the effectiveness of three program enhancements implemented at scale that were designed to improve preschool children’s social-emotional competence. All three had positive impacts on teacher practice and on children’s social-emotional outcomes during the preschool year, although to varying degrees and not necessarily in the expected ways.

Issue Focus

MDRC’s Portfolio in Early Childhood Education

March, 2014

Today, leaders from across the political spectrum are calling for new investments in early childhood education. But many important questions remain about how to make the most of the promise of preschool and related interventions. MDRC’s portfolio of research and demonstration projects is tackling some of the biggest ones.

 

Report

Large-Scale Implementation of Programs to Improve Children’s Social-Emotional Competence

December, 2013
Shira Kolnik Mattera, Chrishana M. Lloyd, Michael Fishman, Michael Bangser

This report describes the extent to which three different classroom-based social-emotional strategies and related professional development supports were implemented as intended in Head Start centers, as well as the degree to which teachers’ practices changed as a result.

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