Pennsylvania’s Kindergarten Entry Inventory (PA KEI) is a reliable reporting tool that offers teachers an instructional strategy for understanding and tracking a student’s proficiency at kindergarten entry.
The tool collects information on a consistent set of standards-based indicators across the commonwealth. The PA KEI is based on Pennsylvania’s Learning Standards for Early Childhood and the Pennsylvania Core Standards. KEI includes 30 indicators and provides a comprehensive profile that includes the domains of:
- Social and Emotional Development;
- English Language Arts;
- Approaches to Learning; and
- Health, Wellness and Physical Development.
PA KEI is intended to be used by kindergarten teachers to record a student’s demonstration of skills within the first 45 calendar days of the kindergarten year.
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provides opportunities to strengthen the contribution of high-quality early childhood education in school reform and improvement efforts. The law recognizes that school success starts before a student enters the K-12 setting. It calls on states to describe how they will assist school districts and elementary schools to collaborate with early childhood education programs, and to invest in evidence-based practices. ESSA supports early learning and LEA collaboration in three main ways:
- expanding access to high-quality early learning;
- encouraging alignment and collaboration from birth through third grade; and
- supporting educators.
The Pennsylvania Kindergarten Entry Inventory is a tangible tool to assist districts in understanding the comprehensive learning strengths and needs of students entering the K-12 setting, in establishing common expectations and language for beginning and extending collaborative conversations with pre-kindergarten programs and families, and in planning and implementing joint professional development opportunities that focus on strengthening evidence-based practices for young learners.
All elementary schools are encouraged to implement Pennsylvania’s Kindergarten Entry Inventory in the 2023-2024 school year. The Kindergarten Entry Inventory is available to all school districts at no cost.
In order to implement the PA KEI, a Kindergarten Entry Inventory Point of Contact (KEI-POC) is required. The KEI-POC will act as the liaison between local education agency (LEA) administrative staff, implementing kindergarten teachers, and OCDEL and data systems staff. Having a dedicated KEI-POC will ensure that effective communication and implementation occurs throughout the KEI process.
Please send the KEI-POC name, email address and phone number to [email protected] by August 15, 2023. Receipt of this information will initiate KEI participation in the 2023-2024 school year.
All kindergarten teachers who have not previously participated must complete a required professional development on-line course and obtain a certificate of completion in order to gain access to the web-based data system. Teachers with a proficient user certificate of completion do not need to repeat the professional development protocol.
The tentative training schedule is as follows:
- April – June: Face-to-face skills and scoring practice professional development available/ dependent on number of teachers and availability of OCDEL staff
- April – September: Required professional development online course available
- ALL implementing kindergarten teachers without a proficient user certificate of completion MUST complete either face-to-face training or a required professional development on-line course.
- August-September: KEI systems professional development opportunities available
- By the start of school: Implementing kindergarten teachers must have a required professional development online course certificate of completion on file in order to gain systems access
- 45 calendar days from start of school: Observation and evidence collection/scoring completed
- 60 calendar days from start of school: Data submissions (student outcomes) finalized within data system
Questions about this communication may be sent to [email protected].