What We Know So Far

Between Spring 2019 and Spring 2022, AEII completed observations in over 2000 early childhood classrooms across the Commonwealth. Observers measured the quality of teacher-child interactions using a standardized, research-based observation protocol. These observations continue to inform how AEII and our partners across the Commonwealth work together to strengthen early learning experiences for all children.

Two children playing with toys.

What the Data Show

Key Strengths

Initial observations indicated that the majority of observed classrooms provided strong emotional support and children’s time and attention were organized in a way that facilitated learning.

Room for Growth

The majority of Virginia’s early childhood classrooms fell below the state’s threshold for strong instructionally supportive interactions promoting children’s thinking and problem-solving skills.

Comparing the Data

These findings, especially the lower scores in instructional support, are similar to what is seen at a national level in other state-funded preschools and Head Start programs.

A Focus On Professional Development

A focus on high-quality professional development makes a difference

The initial data captured in Virginia’s early childhood classrooms indicate a need for a broad and comprehensive strategy that improves interactions and instruction. Our strategy focuses on teacher-child interactions by providing data-driven, individualized professional development to identified early childhood educators. This way, Virginia’s investments can maximize positive benefits for teachers and children across the Commonwealth.

Hear the Stories

Hear how teachers and children have benefitted from effective professional development and high-quality learning through AEII Coaching.

How we Support Quality ECE

Learn how AEII promotes intentional teaching practices through practice-based, individualized coaching.