Quality Measurement

Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS) are tools states use to assess, improve, and promote quality in early child care and education. The ratings can be used by parents in selecting child care, by providers as a benchmark to achieve better quality care, and by programs as an accountability measure for funding.  States and municipalities that adopt these methods need support in determining the most useful ways to build and evaluate models. Mathematica has conducted an assessment of these systems, including helping states better understand the intended and unintended consequences of policy and implementation. We have also examined associations between quality features, thresholds and dosage and child outcomes in the Q-DOT project, and charted teachers’ use of child progress monitoring to improve instructional practice (Child Progress Monitoring). In addition, we have developed measures of family experiences in programs (Head Start Family Voices) and of child-adult interactions in infant/toddler care settings (Q-CCIIT).

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