Growing Futures Early Childhood Rating and Improvement System Pilot
In November 2009, Lakes & Prairies Child Care Resource and Referral received a grant from United Way of Cass-Clay and the Fargo-Moorehead Area Foundation to implement a pilot Early Childhood Quality Rating & Improvement System in Cass County. Through the pilot, the Early Childhood Rating & Improvement System was developed, evaluated and recommendations for improvements and implementation were made.
The goal of the QRIS is to “recognize and improve the quality of early care and education settings in order to support children’s optional development and learning; provide parents with an easy to use tool to assist them in selecting quality early care and education programs for their children; and align early childhood resources in North Dakota in a more effective and accountable manner.
After the QRIS pilot project of nearly four years in the states largest county, North Dakota is now working toward statewide implementation of Bright & Early, the states four step system of quality improvement.
Bright & Early North Dakota launched statewide in 2015. There are 4 levels in North Dakota’s QRIS. Roll-out was divided into 2 parts. Levels 1-2 rolled out statewide in 2015. Levels 3-4 will be available statewide by July 2016 (currently available to limited geographic regions). Bright & Early will be available to a limited number of providers in all counties at steps 1 and 2. Bright & Early involves a number of supports for participants, including a quality improvement guide, access to a personal coach, grant dollars and bonus awards, and recognition for a job well done.
Learn more about North Dakota Bright & Early at http://www.brightnd.org/
Updated January 2016
This report describes the diverse strategies states are using to build upon Early Head Start and offers recommendations for states interested in expanding this proven program.