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New Mexico’s Early Childhood Assessment Tools: Validation and Development

Note: This WestEd project was completed in 2016.

WestEd researchers collected evidence regarding the validity, reliability, fairness, and feasibility of pre-kindergarten assessment tools for use as a kindergarten entry assessment for the state of New Mexico. WestEd studied the degree to which these tools met the guidelines for a kindergarten entry assessment.

As part of this study, WestEd conducted extensive document reviews, and a series of surveys of teachers and stakeholders in New Mexico.

The validity study supported New Mexico’s decision to use these pre-kindergarten tools as the foundation for the development of a kindergarten observation tool to serve as the state’s kindergarten entry assessment. To build the kindergarten observation tool, WestEd’s early childhood content experts revised existing observational rubrics and developed new observational rubrics that were identified as essential for an assessment at kindergarten entry.

WestEd provided New Mexico with professional development, communication, and psychometric services. With a planned census administration for the 2016–2017 school year, WestEd and the New Mexico Public Education Department have successfully partnered to develop an appropriate measure that can be used by kindergarten teachers to inform instruction.