The Longitudinal Picture: How Pennsylvania Identifies Students from Early Childhood to K12 and Links Data Across Agencies


April 6th, 2020

Congratulations to all the states that recently won PDG B-5 Development of Renewal Grants!

The benefits to early childhood education programs like Early Head Start, Head Start and home visiting services improve education in more ways than one. Improvements include better outcomes in social and behavioral development, improved family relationships and increased educational attainment [1].

Reading through many of the proposals, plans, and needs analysis reports, I found that there was a common theme of seeking to generate unduplicated counts of early childhood education participants.

For states to receive accurate funding and continue developing these effective programs, the state’s responsibility is accountability, specifically around unduplicated counts of the Early Childhood Education participants. Accurate counts or unduplicated counts ensure that each state has the ability to calculate program participation and participation rates. Linking Early Childhood Education participant data to a state’s K-12 data allows a state to analyze this data longitudinally, as well as the longer-term outcomes.

For states seeking to calculate unduplicated counts, we recently published a new case study on this topic with a spotlight on Pennsylvania.

Using PASecureID, powered by eScholar Uniq-ID, the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) has been able to accurately and successfully link early childhood data to K-12 data and know how many unique kids and what population are enrolled in each early childhood program, answer any questions around program quality, outcomes, and quality of care.

PDE began assigning the PASecureID to all kids enrolled in publicly funded Early Childhood Education programs like Head Start, state pre-kindergarten, early intervention programs, subsidized childcare, and the top two tiers of the Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System [4]. With PASecureID, agencies are able to link data across two systems from two separate agencies: the Pennsylvania Information Management System (PIMS) powered by the eScholar Complete Data Warehouse and the Early Learning Network.

Since 2007, Pennsylvania has assigned over 5 million unique identifiers to Early Childhood Education and K-12 students.

To learn more about how Pennsylvania is identifying students from early childhood to K-12 and links data across agencies, click to download our case study.

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