Early childhood is a time for learning, exploration, and play. When children have the opportunity to engage with typically developing peers their learning is greatly enhanced. In fact "high quality inclusive settings are the only environments wth data consistently supporting children's superior learning AND non-inclusive envrironments have been shown to negatively impact children's learning." -Phil Strain, Director of the Pele Center (2016)
Ensuring all children have meaningful opportunities to learn is key to achieving positive child outcomes. The Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework can help teachers, parents and related service providers develop lessons with meaningful, accessible, and challenging learning opportunities.
States are required to report on three child outcomes for preschool to the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and as a result, schools are required to report child outcomes data on every child identified as having a disability that has an IEP. Arizona currently uses Teaching Strategies Gold to measure the performance of preschool children with disabilities and report child outcomes. Beginning July 1, 2023, the ADE will no longer require PEAs to use a single tool to report child outcomes. Schools may conduct the Child Outcomes Summary (COS) Process using district-selected methods and tools or continue to use Teaching Strategies Gold. If a PEA decides to adopt a different methodology, training for staff on the new procedures is available through the Arizona Professional Learning and Development(APLD) platform. An overview of the COS process was presented at the Special Education Professionals Check in on March 16, 2023. The process used must result in reliable and timely data submissions. The Child Outcomes Scores must reflect the IEP team's view of the child's performance upon entry to the program and at their exit. The following resources explain the process and the professional development activities to prepare school teams to conduct Child Outcomes Summary ratings.