SA Pre-K students exceed national norm in kindergarten readiness, study shows

Study conducted by Westat Inc.


SAN ANTONIO – An independent evaluation of pre-kindergarten students for a fourth straight year shows students in a San Antonio program surpassed averages in cognitive, literacy and math, despite beginning the year significantly below average.

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“Pre-K 4 SA opened its doors in 2013 to 4-year-olds across San Antonio with a goal of delivering high-quality early childhood education to families who may not have access otherwise,” Pre-K 4 SA Board Chair Elaine Mendoza said. “The results indicate we are succeeding in a big way."

Mendoza said Pre-K 4 SA prepares about 2,000 children for kindergarten each year, adding that it is on track to change the educational and workforce trajectory of San Antonio within one generation.

The study, which was conducted by Westat Inc., measured the effectiveness of the program using the Teaching Strategies GOLD Assessment.

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“Our teachers continue to perform well in classroom quality across all four Pre-K 4 SA education centers,” Pre-K 4 SA CEO Sarah Baray said. “Our children came into pre-kindergarten significantly below the normed sample in five out of six GOLD outcomes. By the end of the school year, our students closed the gaps and were more than prepared for kindergarten and beyond.”

Evaluation results showed Pre-K 4 SA teachers demonstrate instructional quality above the research threshold in all three domains -- emotional support, classroom organization and instructional support -- indicating that Pre-K 4 SA leads to higher outcomes for students.

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“This study highlights the success of our teachers and students,” Baray said. “We use this assessment, conducted throughout the year, to continually improve curriculum, classroom strategies and professional learning for our teachers and our district partners.”

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