2018 State of Early Childhood Data Systems

In April 2018, 50 states responded to an Early Childhood Data Collaborative (ECDC) survey to assess states’ capacity to link child-, family-, program-, and workforce-level data across ECE programs. Linking child-, family-, and program-level data means having the ability to follow individual children, programs, and staff across programs and over time. Data may be housed in different systems or within the same system. The 2018 Survey included questions about linking child-, program-, and workforce-level data; data governance and policies; and uses of coordinated early childhood data.

National findings and recommendations from the 2018 Early Childhood Data Systems Survey are available in our final reportClick here to explore an interactive map with state profiles containing child, program, and workforce data. For more information, view the slides and video from the related webinar.

Key Findings

  1. Policymakers still lack comprehensive data needed to assess early childhood policies and outcomes.
  2. Home visiting and federally funded Head Start programs are the least likely among ECE programs to be linked by states relative to other ECE programs.
  3. From 2013 to 2018, the number of states that link child-level data from the Subsidized Child Care program increased.
  4. Data about program site quality are linked most frequently by states, relative to other types of data such as workforce conditions (i.e., turnover) or structural standards (i.e., class size).
  5. States were least likely to link workforce-level datarelative to child- and program- level data.
  6. Compared to 2013, fewer states have a defined data governance body to support the coordination and use of ECE data.
  7. States lack processes to engage the public about data privacy policies.

State progress linking child, program, and workforce data

Select an indicator to view national results.

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