How Much Does the Pre-K CLASS Relate to Children's Readiness for School Skills?

How Much Does the Pre-K CLASS Relate to Children's Readiness for School Skills?

Published: Feb 03, 2021
Publisher: Mathematica

Tutrang Nguyen

Key Findings
  • ­Classroom scores on the Pre-K CLASS sometimes have a relationship with children’s school readiness outcomes in different domains. When they do, the size of the relationship is small.
  • ­The Pre-K CLASS assesses teacher-child interactions in a variety of areas, known as domains. Instructional Support is the domain whose scores have the greatest relationship to children’s outcomes. Technical assistance to teachers and professional development providers focused on this domain could have the most impact for improving children’s outcomes.
  • ­There is some limited evidence that Pre-K CLASS scores need to reach a certain level to be related to children’s outcomes, so more research is needed to determine the appropriateness of benchmarks for determining quality.
  • ­A few studies found that Pre-K CLASS scores matter more for some children than others. More research is needed to examine the relationships of Pre-K CLASS scores with outcomes for children from different backgrounds, and the reasons why findings might differ for different groups.

This research brief presents findings from a literature scan conducted to better understand the performance of the Classroom Assessment Scoring System-Preschool (Pre-K CLASS; Pianta, La Paro, and Hamre 2008) in early care and education studies. Twenty-seven studies were found in a comprehensive search that focused on the associations of the Pre-K CLASS with child outcomes, including any threshold effects and equity issues or key subgroup findings. By summarizing findings of the most recent studies published in the field, we can learn more about how and when quality measures relate to children’s outcomes, the reasons why the strength of those relationships might be modest, and if there is the need to expand existing measures of quality. The brief ends with a discussion of the implications these findings have for practice and future research.

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