Five Essentials-Early Ed Surveys

The Ounce of Prevention Fund is in a research partnership with the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research (UChicago Consortium) to create the Five Essentials Early Education Measurement System (Five Essentials-Early Ed). The Five Essentials-Early Ed will consist of a teacher and a parent survey that will measure organizational supports found critical to continuous improvement of teaching and learning. The Five Essentials-Early Ed surveys draw strongly from UChicago Consortium’s existing framework of organizational supports and corresponding surveys that measure those supports in K-12. The Ounce-UChicago Consortium research team is carefully adapting, piloting and validating the surveys to ensure they are reliable and valid for use in early education settings.

The Five Essentials-Early Ed surveys will measure the following leadership and organizational conditions in early education settings:

  1. Effective Leaders: The school or program leadership is strategically focused on children’s development and early achievement. They nurture trust and collective understanding and responsibility for excellence, and improvement among staff and families.
  2. Collaborative Teachers: Teachers are committed to the school or program, build strong relationships with their colleagues, and work together continuously to improve teaching and learning by engaging in research-based, data-informed cycles of professional development.
  3. Involved Families: All staff develop strong relationships with families and support active family engagement in children’s learning and development.
  4. Supportive Environments: Schools or programs are physically and emotionally safe and engaging environments, wherein staff hold high expectations for children’s social-emotional and academic learning, coupled with nurturing, individualized support for children and families.
  5. Ambitious Instruction: Teachers and staff provide consistently engaging, effective, rigorous, and developmentally-appropriate curriculum and instruction.

The Five Essentials-Early Ed will consist of two surveys, one for teachers and one for parents of preschool-age children. Both surveys are designed to capture indicators of processes occurring at the school or center level that, in prior research, have been linked to improvements in students’ learning and attendance. These surveys will give voice to the experiences and perspectives of staff and parents that will inform how leaders conceptualize, plan, and generate continuous improvement in the quality of teaching and learning.

New Survey Development Brief

Essential Organizational Supports for Early Education: The Development of a New Survey Tool to Measure Organizational Conditions documents the adaptation and refinement of the UChicago Consortium’s K–12 Five Essentials survey for use in publicly-funded early education programs, including federally-funded Head Start, state- and locally-funded programs that provide center-based services (not home-based services) to three- and four-year-old children. This brief describes the first two years of teacher and parent survey development. A validation study is currently underway by the Ounce-UChicago Consortium researchers to investigate whether responses to the teacher and parent surveys are related to classroom and child outcomes across different settings and with different populations. Please read about our rigorous survey development process here: Download the brief.

This project is generously supported by an Anonymous Funder, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Pritzker Children’s Initiative.