The purpose of assessing young children is to collect information necessary to make important decisions about their developmental and educational needs. Assessment must always work to enhance opportunities for optimal growth, development, and learning. The process of determining individual developmental and education needs informs practice and provides a template for setting individual and programs goals.
Best practices for the assessment of young children include carefully selected strategies and instruments that measure specific characteristics over a period of time and in many different contexts. Such assessment provides a more accurate picture of the child’s needs and encourages appropriate decision making.
Given the importance of assessing children appropriately, it is critical that schools and districts give careful attention to the selection and planning of their assessment system. To help with this process, SERVE has developed the following products:
Assessing Kindergarten Children: What Schools Need to Know
This resource book is designed to guide schools systems through a decision-making process to design an assessment system that is best suited to their particular needs. Individuals involved in selecting assessment measures and designing schoolwide assessment systems can use this book as a planning guide – a tool to help them make decisions about assessments based on “best practices “ in early childhood assessment.
Assessing Kindergarten Children: A Compendium of Assessment Instruments
This document is designed to provide a quick overview of assessment instruments that can be used with kindergarten-aged children. Schools and state departments of education often need information on assessment instruments and lack a comprehensive resource that provides consistent information on many different instruments. The Compendium is designed to provide a starting point for gathering information on assessment instruments.