In January 2015, APA was awarded a contract to evaluate Step Up to Quality, Nebraska's new Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) for early childhood education providers. The program was established in Nebraska law in June 2013 (Neb. Rev. Stat. 71-1961) to: (1) provide a path to higher quality for child care and early childhood education programs, (2) improve child development and school readiness outcomes; (3) provide parents a tool by which to evaluate the quality of child care and ECE programs, and (4) provide accountability for public funds invested in ECE programs.
APA will be evaluating the development and implementation of this program as it rolls out across Nebraska in 2015. The evaluation will include provider surveys and focus groups, parents surveys and data analysis.