While P-3 reforms are spreading quickly around the nation, evaluations to assess them are not keeping pace. Part of the challenge is that P-3 reforms are complex. They cross the traditional boundaries of birth-to-5 and K-12 education. They cross multiple grades and aim for practice and policy changes in many areas (e.g., professional development, accountability, and data) and at multiple levels (e.g., classrooms, schools, districts, and communities). While improving children’s learning and development is the ultimate objective, P-3 reforms must first accomplish multi-faceted changes within and across multiple groups of adults (e.g., teachers, education leaders, and families).
To build better understanding of how P-3 approaches are succeeding in closing early achievement gaps and creating effective organizational coherence between and among 0-5 and PreK-12 entities, the National P-3 Center conducts innovative research that has practical relevance for the fields of early learning and elementary education.