27% of SC Kindergarteners "Demonstrating Readiness" on the KRA
(SC First Steps Newsletter, June 2021)
27% of the state’s kindergartners scored high enough on the assessment to be considered kindergarten ready. Racial, ethnic and income disparities also point to areas were significant work must be done to ensure all children start school ready for success. 17% of African American children and 25% of Hispanic children demonstrated readiness compared to 35% of White children. Of the children in poverty, only 18% met the requirements of readiness compared with 44% of children not in poverty. One bright spot in the data: participating in First Steps 4K successfully closed the gap between children in poverty and the general population. Rather than starting behind their peers, 27% of First Steps 4K students demonstrated readiness. Of the 4-year-olds in poverty who did not participate in a formal 4K program, only 11% demonstrated readiness for kindergarten, highlighting the importance of participation in a curriculum-driven 4K program.
(SC Education Oversight Committee)
What are the overall Demonstrating Readiness scores for the five Anderson County School Districts?
Anderson 1 33%
Anderson 2 17%
Anderson 3 27%
Anderson 4 29%
Anderson 5 22%
This indicates that an average of 74% of Anderson County children are NOT ready for kindergarten.
How can we improve this situation?
The Anderson County First Steps Comprehensive Plan, approved by the Partnership Board of Directors, focuses on the following goal and objectives:
MORE CHILDREN ARRIVE AT KINDERGARTEN READY FOR SUCCESS: By 2023, the percentage of Anderson County children who score at the highest level on the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment will increase by 5% from 38.5% to 43.5%.
What strategies are in place to meet this goal?
STRATEGY 1.1: Provide parents with access to support and resources that strengthen their families; build their confidence, knowledge and skills; and promote the optimal development of their children.
STRATEGY 1.2: Support parents’ knowledge of early childhood milestones and kindergarten readiness, and build parents’ skills in supporting their children’s successful transitions across early learning programs and into kindergarten.
STRATEGY 2.1 Expand the geographic reach and enrollment in state-funded, full-day 4-year-old Kindergarten available at no cost to eligible children in public schools, private schools and private childcare centers.
STRATEGY 2.2: Expand reach by collaborating with targeted and diverse early education service providers that include both programs that are intensive and those that have a broader scope.
STRATEGY 3.1: Engage in public information and parent outreach efforts to promote and educate about child development and school readiness.
Two sources to explore are:
THE BASICS and PALMETTO BASICS
In 2020, The Basics movement set a goal to increase kindergarten readiness scores by 25% in 25 regions by 2025.
To learn more about what you can do to prepare your child for school readiness and success, click on the links below:
All children are ready for kindergarten when they are five years old by September 1 of that school year. But kindergarten readiness is more than a matter of age. For a strong start in school, children need positive relationships and supportive learning environments beginning at birth. It is our responsibility as families, caregivers and communities to nurture the health and development necessary for school success.In 2017 38.5% of Anderson County 5K students demonstrated readiness on the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment (KRA). While this was above the state average of 37%, there is more work for community educators and parents to do to increase this baseline.
South Carolina’s Profile of the Ready Kindergartner describes the physical, cognitive, social and emotional signs of school readiness. Because each child develops differently, each child will be ready in different ways. That is why schools and educators must also be ready: prepared to meet the individual needs of students at all levels of readiness and provide whatever support and services are needed for a quality kindergarten experience.