Early Childhood Care and Education
We conduct training, technical assistance, and applied research to inform early care and education practices at the national, state and local levels for state government, local schools and child care agencies, including Head Start and public pre-K programs. The following projects illustrate our work in this area.
The Maine AfterSchool Network (MASN) serves as a hub for collaborative efforts that will enable every child to have access to quality, inclusive, affordable afterschool programming which meets the needs of the child, the family, and the community.
Maine Roads to Quality is the Early Care and Education Career Development Network for Maine. Established in 1999, its purpose is to promote and support professionalism in the early care and education field.
Maine Roads to Quality works with various partners across the state, including Maine’s Higher Education System, to promote professional development opportunities throughout the state.
The Educare Evaluation is a partnership with University of Maine with Dr. Alan Cobo- Lewis and University of Southern Maine. The evaluation work is done with Educare Central Maine, which is one of 21 Educare schools in the country, each with its own local evaluation partner. The purpose of the study is to support the mission of Educare, which is a research-based program that prepares young at-risk children for school and which serves as a platform for quality early learning programming. The evaluation work consists of well known assessments with children, classroom observations, and staff and parent surveys.
Quality for ME Revision Project
Quality for ME is a four-step rating scale developed to rate child care programs based on quality standards. It is administered through Maine DHHS.
In July of 2014, the University of Maine, in partnership with the USM was contracted through DHHS to conduct a year-long study of the Quality of ME system. The goal of the study is to make recommendations to the Office of Child and Family Services for revisions to this system.