The New York State Education Department’s firm commitment to a P-12 educational system has been reaffirmed with the establishment of the Office of Early Learning (OEL).
The OEL is responsible for a wide range of educational programs and works closely with parents, early care and education agencies, schools and state agencies to coordinate programs and resources with the goal of making New York’s early learning system as comprehensive and seamless as possible.
Specific programs include:
The OEL is also tasked with ensuring that the early learning initiatives outlined in the Race to the Top application (RttT) are successful.
- Establishing world class internationally benchmarked early learning standards to improve school readiness and facilitate greater success with the transition between preschool, kindergarten, and early elementary education
- Developing a comprehensive assessment protocol and data system for Preschool – Grade 3, including the addition of an early childhood component to the NYSED public report cards for districts and schools
- Developing practices, strategies and programs that improve educational outcomes for Preschool – Grade 3, particularly in high-needs environments
- Developing a tool for parents’ use in identifying high quality settings in preschool
- Developing a Statewide and National Early Learning Network
NYSED Pre-K to Kindergarten Transition Tool
Building relationships, partnering and collaboration are extremely important to facilitate the transition of prekindergarten students to kindergarten. This is a time of great change for children, parents, families and schools in which new relationships, new expectations and new competencies are being developed. The local school district should have a comprehensive plan for supporting its newest incoming students and their families as they transition into a K-12 system.
The checklist below will help to determine how complete your school district’s prekindergarten to kindergarten transition plan is. It may signal areas for improvement for your district to work on to ensure a positive start for young children in the school community.