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Prepared for Kindergarten

In order to be kindergarten-ready, young children need quality early education, strong relationships with families, a safe and secure home environment and regular health and developmental screenings and support.

Today, we know without a doubt that quality early childhood education leads to more success in kindergarten and throughout life. For low-income children, early childhood education is one of the keys to upward mobility. It also leads to a stronger economy for all of us.

This work does not just involve preschools – success requires strong families, safe homes and timely screenings to ensure kids are meeting their developmental milestones.

PALS-K stands for Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening for Kindergarten. Fall PALS-K benchmarks help schools identify kindergarten students who are performing below developmentally appropriate levels on fundamental literacy skills and need additional instruction.

Studies have shown that children without health insurance often receive less medical care and have worse health outcomes than children with insurance. If a young child is not receiving appropriate medical care and is not healthy, it is difficult—if not impossible—for that child to be prepared for kindergarten.

Research has consistently shown that quality early childhood education has a major impact on a child’s overall development and increases their chances of success in the classroom and in life. While these benefits continue throughout a child’s education, they are particularly important during the transition to kindergarten.

As with any health concern, developmental delays or disabilities in young children can be more effectively treated the earlier they’re detected. Recent estimates are that 15% of children ages 3-17 in the United States have a developmental disability.