Results Matter

Lexington Public Schools-Early Learning Academy—Dissemination of Program Quality and Child Outcomes 2016-2017

The Nebraska Department of Education (NDE) Office of Early Childhood requires that school district operated preschool programs utilize a program outcomes system to ensure that young children participate in a high quality early childhood program that contributes to positive cognitive, social, and health outcomes.

Lexington’s Early Learning Academy is required to follow Results Matter in Nebraska which is a child, program, and family outcomes measurement system designed and implemented to improve programs and supports for all young children served by districts and their community partners. 

Results Matter in Nebraska calls for a program outcome assessment and the most common approach to measuring program quality is through the use of an observation tool.  Nebraska Department of Education gave school districts the option to have their program quality measured by the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale-Revised Edition (ECERS-R) or the Preschool Classroom Assessment Scoring system (CLASS).  The Early Learning Academy staff and administrator chose to have our classrooms evaluated by the CLASS observation tool.

In January of 2017, an observer completed the CLASS in two of our nine classrooms.   CLASS is composed of three broad domains of effective teacher-child interactions including emotional support, classroom organization and instructional support.  Within each domain, there are multiple dimensions that focus on a different aspect of the teacher-child interactions.  Each of the dimensions includes a set of indicators of effective classroom interactions and behavioral markers that support each indicator. 

Eighty (80) Nebraska classrooms were observed using the CLASS observation tool in the 2016-17 school year.  The table below compares ELA’s average scores with Nebraska’s average scores along with Nebraska’s range of scores.

Many variables affect the care and education that teachers provide for children in early childhood programs.  It is not expected for programs to do well on all the requirements of the scale.  Programs are expected to have strengths and weaknesses in their scores.  The results from CLASS gives the staff at the Early Learning Academy an opportunity to consider where changes are needed and to determine how to create the desired improvements. 

Domain Dimension NE Average Score ELA Average Score NE Range
Emotional Support 5.94 5.66 4.31-6.75
Positive Climate 6.08 6 4.25-7
Negative Climate 6.97 7 6.25-7
Teacher Sensitivity 5.80 5 3.5-7
Regard for Student Perspectives 4.92 4.63 2.5-6.5
Classroom Organization 5.40 5.76 3.5-6.59
Behavior Management 5.86 6.13 3.5-7
Productivity 5.62 5.88 3.75-6.75
Instructional Learning Formats 4.72 5.3 3-6.25
Instructional Support 3.06 3.88 1.5-5.33
Concept Development 2.51 3.5 1-5
Quality of Feedback 2.77 4 1-5.25
Language of Modeling 3.91 4.1 1.5-5.33

In addition to the program evaluation, all children enrolled at ELA must be included in the Teaching Strategies GOLD assessment system that is based on observations and reflects evidence-based practices.  By using Teaching Strategies GOLD, teachers are able to integrate information gathered across different settings and individualize to address each child’s unique way of learning. Teaching Strategies GOLD allows families to be engaged as active participants and reflects that development and learning are rooted in culture and supported by the family.

Percentage meeting or exceeding expectations

Social-Emotional

 Physical

 Language

 Cognitive

 Literacy

 Mathematics

Fall 2016

41%

45%

30%

36%

53%

24%

Spring 2017

82%

87%

66%

76%

86%

64%