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Williford is Briefing Lawmakers on the Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Project


Amanda Williford, research professor at the Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning, is in the process of briefing state lawmakers on the Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Project (VKRP).

VKRP is aimed at selecting and piloting a tool that can accurately assess children’s school readiness across a range of learning domains when entering kindergarten. This year they are piloting a teacher administered direct assessment of math and a direct assessment and teacher report of social-emotional skills.

These assessments were selected to complement Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS), which is already being administered by teachers across the state to assess children’s literacy skills. In doing so, the goal is to provide a ‘snapshot’ of Virginia’s kindergartners and more clearly define the existing readiness gap. It is estimated that 10,000 kids arrive at kindergarten without the basic skills to succeed in school.

The purpose of Williford’s meetings in the state capitol is not only to brief lawmakers, but also to advocate for additional funding for statewide implementation of the project.  So far, Williford has spoken to Virginia’s Secretary of Education Anne Holten, House Majority Leader Kirk Cox and is planning to meet with Lieutenant Governor Ralf Northam and former Secretary of Education Laura Fornash.

The Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Assessment is a partnership between CASTL and Elevate Early Education (E3). 

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