West Virginia Team Attends “Ready Schools” Conference

May 16, 2005

Charleston, W.Va. - A team representing Anna Jarvis Elementary, North Central Head Start and Taylor County Schools recently attended a national conference on “Ready Schools” in St. Louis, Missouri. The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) hosted the event with support from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.  

Anna Jarvis Elementary is one of 19 schools across the nation participating in the CCSSO Ready Schools project. Linda Sharp, Linda McBee and John Stallings, along with Dr. Cathy Jones and Karen Duckworth from the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) comprised the West Virginia team.  

Participants included representation from state education agencies, districts, schools and community organizations from Arkansas, Connecticut, Indiana, Oregon, Washington and West Virginia.  

The conference provided an opportunity for states, districts and schools to learn more about improving their school’s readiness to support the transition of children from early childhood settings. Participants gained in-depth knowledge of policies and practices that are supportive in implementing the principles of ready schools through the presentation by Dr. Robert Pianta, professor in The Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia. Pianta provided guidelines for the transition of children from early childhood settings and the establishment of the necessary framework for successful transitions for all children.  

Earlier this year, each participating school completed the Ready Schools Assessment tool kit developed by the High Scope Educational Research Foundation. Dr. Charles Hohmann, a research associate at High Scope, presented an overview of the results from the tool kit.  

District and school participants met in teams to analyze their Ready Schools data and identified strategies for reaching out to all children and families. Simultaneously, SEA representatives met separately to address emerging institutional and public policy issues regarding ready schools at the state, district and school levels. Both groups re-convened to report their findings.  

The afternoon was devoted to state teams sharing best practices and on-going initiatives with respect to ready schools. The meeting concluded with a review of the action plans developed by state and school teams that address the principles of ready schools and will be implemented during the next six months.  

For more information on the CCSSO Ready Schools Project, please contact Dr. Cathy Jones at 304-558-8098 or ctrjones @access.k12.wv.us or Susan Taylor, Director, 202-312-6867 or at susant@ccsso.org.

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.