Shelby County Schools offers alternative schools to achieve more positive outcomes for higher-risk children.

February 25, 2014 / Briefs 2014 / 0 Comments /

Shelby County Schools has adopted public health’s multi-tiered model of intervention for achieving more positive outcomes for higher-risk children.
• Primary prevention is designed to keep problems from emerging.
• Secondary prevention is designed to stop and reverse the slide toward negative outcomes.
• Meanwhile, tertiary prevention approaches are focused on young people who need the most serious and immediate intervention.

The most vulnerable students in Shelby County are concentrated within alternative schools.


Download Brief 04/2014 (PDF)

Literacy in Memphis and Shelby County: Some groups of low-income students are doing much better than others.

February 25, 2014 / Briefs 2014 / 0 Comments /

Literacy is context specific.
Literacy is necessary for college and career readiness and success.
Many Shelby County Schools (SCS) students are not college ready in reading.
Low-income youth are less likely to be proficient in reading.
Some groups of low-income students are doing much better than others.
Young adults’ literacy levels reflect early learning, school environments, and family and community factors.
Stronger, individual-level measures of literacy level need to be part of any literacy intervention.


Download Brief 03/2014 (PDF)

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In 2013, two in three children in Shelby County entered kindergarten below age-appropriate levels of reading readiness.

January 27, 2014 / Local Data / 0 Comments /

Source: 12. Sell, M. (2013). Research Brief: Kindergarten Readiness. Shelby County Schools Office of Planning and Accountability, Office of Research, Planning, and Improvement.

Low-income children have weaker early reading skills. Most children in Shelby County Schools are from low-income families.

January 27, 2014 / Briefs 2014 / 0 Comments /

Low-income children have weaker early reading skills.
Weaker pre-reading skills make learning to read more difficult.
Kindergarten readiness gaps become academic achievement gaps.


Download Brief 02/2014 (PDF)

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Children in poverty hear fewer words at home.

January 23, 2014 / National Data / 0 Comments /

Children in poverty hear fewer words at home.

A child of professional parents typically has heard 45 Million words by age four.
A child in an impoverished family typically has heard 12 Million words by age four.

Children in poverty hear less praise.

A child of professional parents hears on average 12 positive statements for two negative statements.
A child in an impoverished family hears on average 1 positive statement for two negative statements.

Graphic based on: Hart, B. and Risley, T. (1995). Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experience of Young American Children.
Baltimore MD: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.

Many children in Shelby County reach school at a disadvantage.

January 23, 2014 / Uncategorized / 0 Comments /

Adverse early childhood experiences influence language development in the early years.
Early disadvantages in development lead to lower levels of kindergarten readiness.
Readiness gaps become academic achievement gaps and grow wider over time.


Download Brief 01/2014 (PDF)

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Pre-K makes a difference

January 8, 2014 / Local Data / 0 Comments /

All test scores improve after one year for Pre-K.
Children with multiple family risk factors show the greatest improvement in scores after one year of Pre-K.

Source: Shahin Samiei, M. Sell & D. Imig. 2012. “Analysis of Pre-Kindergarten PPV-T scores by Family Risk Factors.”

Factors impacting reading readiness

January 8, 2014 / Local Data / 0 Comments /

Early childhood differences influence reading readiness…
Memphis, TN, 2012

Source: Shahin Samiei, M. Sell, A. Bush & D. Imig. 2012. “Evaluating the relationship between the Imagination Library early childhood literacy program and kindergarten readiness.”

Pre-Kindergarten makes a world of difference.

July 17, 2013 / National Data / 0 Comments /

These research findings are based on state-funded pre-kindergarten programs and high quality early childhood programs such as High Scope Perry Preschool, Chicago Child-Parent, and Abecedarian Project.
Brief: The Benefits of Pre-K: What the Research Shows
Download full brief (PDF, 07/2014)

Parenting, language development, and school readiness: The importance of early brain development.

September 19, 2011 / CUCP Briefs / 0 Comments /

Young children need a variety of skills to make a successful transition to school. Cognitive skills—skills related to thinking, knowing, and learning—are an important component of school readiness (Claessens et al., 2009; Duncan et al., 2007). Cognitive development begins long before school entry and is affected by children’s early environments. This policy brief explores environmental influences on cognitive development, and focuses on parenting and language development.

Some highlights of the brief:
» Children from disadvantaged backgrounds are less prepared for kindergarten and are more likely to fall behind their more affluent peers once they reach school.
» Parents can be key players in promoting the cognitive and language skills that children need at school entry.
» Interventions that increase parental responsiveness, that improve parental language, and encourage reading can help decrease school readiness gaps between children from different backgrounds.


Download Brief (PDF).