Charting early childhood development

The Challenge 

The Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-11 (ECLS-K: 2011) was designed to provide detailed and comprehensive data that can be used to describe and to better understand children’s early learning and development, transitions into kindergarten and beyond, and progress through the elementary grades, as well as how children’s early experiences relate to their later development, learning, and experiences in school. Westat was selected by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) to conduct the ECLS-K:2011 as well as its predecessor study, the ECLS-K:1998-99, which followed 21,260 children from kindergarten through 8th grade.

Our Solutions 

  • During the 2010-11 school year, more than 18,000 kindergartners in 900 public and private schools across the nation were selected to participate in the ECLS-K:2011. These children are followed each year from kindergarten through 5th grade.
  • Information about the children, their parents, their teachers, and schools was collected in the fall and spring of kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade, and in the spring of 3rd through 5th grades.
  • During each data collection period, children completed a direct cognitive assessment and had their height and weight measured, and their parents are interviewed. Each spring, data were collected from school administrators and teachers.

The Results 

  • The multifaceted data collected across the years allow researchers and policymakers to study how various child, home, classroom, school, and community factors at various points in children’s lives relate to cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development.

Our Client 

U.S. Department of Education (ED)