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Research confirms KinderCare students are better prepared for first grade

September 5, 2019

Portland, Ore. (September 5, 2019) – The results are in! Results from the BRIGANCE® and TerraNova® national studies confirm the incredible impact that KinderCare Education (KCE) programs have on children. The assessments show that KinderCare children are better prepared for first grade. They also confirm that the longer that children are enrolled in KinderCare programs, the sooner they achieve key developmental milestones.

“These results show that KinderCare’s focus on early childhood education and continued commitment to educational excellence are paying off for our students,” said Dr. Elanna Yalow, KCE’s Chief Academic Officer. “This data enables us to identify and intervene early on in a child’s development and partner with parents to ensure the well-being and success of their child later in life. Because of this, we truly have the opportunity to change the trajectory of a child’s life.”

The TerraNova III assessments confirm that children who attend KinderCare’s programs for a year or longer will start elementary school with stronger than expected skills for their grade level than their peers. In fact, kindergarteners who were enrolled in KinderCare before kindergarten consistently outperform their peers in math and reading, testing at a first-grade level before they enter school.

Whether they are learning how to share or taking their first steps, KinderCare children also achieve key developmental milestones sooner. The BRIGANCE studies show that children who have been in KinderCare programs since infancy achieve these milestones six weeks ahead of their peers by two years of age and almost nine months ahead of their peers by the time they are five years old.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children who receive quality early childhood education are better prepared for school because they learn crucial behavior and coping skills, as well as foundational cognitive skills such as language and memory. These skills help children learn to handle their feelings, relate to and communicate with others, and enter school ready to learn.

About the assessments
A study using TerraNova Third Edition, a standardized assessment to measure reading and math skills in kindergarteners, concluded that KinderCare children are performing at first-grade levels. Children enrolled in KinderCare programs for one year or more were on average shown to be performing two months ahead of children who had been enrolled for less time. TerraNova is used in all KinderCare private kindergarten classrooms each spring to measure early literacy and math skills at the end of the year and assess readiness for first grade.

KCE used the BRIGANCE developmental screen to see how children are meeting developmental milestones for physical, language, academic/cognitive, social-emotional development and self-help skills. The BRIGANCE Early Childhood Screens III tool was used to assess children in KinderCare programs nationwide, and results found that KinderCare students see significant improvement in their developmental status after spending more time in KinderCare centers and programs. The BRIGANCE Early Childhood Screens III is an age-normed standardized developmental screening tool that is used nationwide to assess children who range in age from six weeks to seven years old. BRIGANCE Early Childhood Screens III was used in fall and spring in 392 KinderCare Learning Centers, 21 KinderCare at Work Centers and 122 Champions sites during the 2018-2019 school year.

About KinderCare Education®
KinderCare Education is America’s largest private provider of early childhood education and child care with more than 36,000 teachers and staff serving 186,000 children every day, where they need us:

  • In neighborhoods, with our KinderCare® Learning Centers and Rainbow Child Care Centers that offer early childhood education and child care for children six weeks to 12 years old
  • At work, through KinderCare Education at Work™, family benefits for employers, including on-site and near-site early learning centers and back-up care for last-minute child care
  • In local schools, with our Champions® before and after-school programs.

KinderCare Education operates more than 1,500 early learning centers, and more than 600 Champions sites, supported by a team of more than 560 employees at its headquarters in Portland, Oregon. In 2019, KinderCare Education earned their third Gallup Great Workplace Award – one of only 39 companies worldwide to win this award. To learn more, visit KinderCare Education.