The Missouri Board of Education is recommending a new assessment tool state wide for early childhood development. The Desired Results Developmental Profile, created by the California Department of Education, is an assessment that will help determine a child’s learning needs before he or she enters kindergarten.
The assessment will not only give teachers an idea of how their student is progressing, but it will also help give the state a better idea of how ready kids in Missouri are for kindergarten.
The Missouri Board of Education’s communication coordinator Sarah Potter said “one of our top 10 by 20 initiatives is ensuring all children enter kindergarten prepared for school success.”
The adopted assessment was one of three options during a pilot the board conducted the past year. This program was not only best option according to the feedback, but also the cheapest.
The assessment will not be required by the state due to lack of funds, but teachers and parents can purchase the program for $300, not including any extra training a child may need.
School officials are reviewing the suggested assessment to determine if they will use it for their students.
Executive Director of Central Missouri Community Action Darin Preis said programs like this are great for the education system.
“There’s a huge return on investment when quality education experiences are offered to children,” he noted.
Preis said the Community Action will be bringing in an early childhood expert to walk through the state-suggested assessment to determine if Community Action should use it. The center is the head of the Head Start Program in Missouri and it must make sure the assessment aligns with its required high scope curriculum before they can adopt it.
While this assessment will not be required by the state, the Board of Education strongly encourages schools and school officials to take advantage of this new program.