ESSA Student Transition Resources – PreK to Kindergarten


Connecticut’s Transition Support Strategies for PreK-Kindergarten

  1. Increasing awareness of prevention and early intervention by including local early childhood care and education providers in stakeholder engagement prior to development of an LEA improvement plan for elementary schools.
  2. Increasing awareness of prevention and early intervention by developing a “landscape analysis” of local early childhood care/education serving the LEA’s students prior to enrollment in PreK or Kindergarten.
  3. Providing tiered supports to LEAs in the form of technical assistance in evidence-based practices about transition planning, such as shared curriculum/pedagogy and data sharing.

 ESSA Early Childhood Overview


This 12-minute webinar offers viewers an overview of the first two resources below, the Early Childhood Landscape Analysis Tool for Connecticut Schools and Districts, and Transitioning to Kindergarten: the Why, What, and How of this Important Milestone for Connecticut Students.

PreK-Kindergarten Transition Resources for Connecticut Elementary Schools

These resources have been created by the Connecticut State Department of Education in partnership with the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood and statewide stakeholders in early childhood and elementary programs. We want to thank Education Counsel for their instrumental support in developing these practical, user-friendly resources that will promote bridge building between early childhood and elementary school domains and better support our youngest students and their families during this critical transition point.

Resource 1The Early Childhood Landscape Analysis Tool for Connecticut Schools and Districts

Effective transition planning requires elementary leaders and educators to analyze the “landscape” of early childhood care and education in their community.

  • Who are the key public, private, and federally-funded providers in your community?
  • What early learning experiences have your incoming students had?
  • What shifts should happen to accommodate our incoming students’ needs and make our schools ready for young learners?
  • What data is available and important to collect and analyze before your kindergartners arrive?
  • What bridges can be built between elementary schools and the early childhood community to improve outcomes for all children?

Resource 2Transitioning to Kindergarten: the Why, What, and How of this Important Milestone for Connecticut Students

This PreK to Kindergarten best practices guide outlines why transition points are critical for continued success and unpacks five core values of effective transitions. It outlines critical pre-transition activities, necessary collaboration between providers, teachers, leaders and families and identifies core transition activities based on best practices. It also includes guidance on professional development opportunities, developing family partnerships, leveraging existing resources, and the key components of effective communication before, during and after the PreK to Kindergarten transition.

Resource 3The Connecticut State Department of Education’s Evidence-Based Guide for Early Learning

This guide represents the department’s “first, best effort” in providing schools and districts with evidence-based practices, endorsed by the CSDE, for (1) building evidence-based early learning systems (age three to grade three); (2) designing and implementing developmentally appropriate instructional practices; (3) capitalizing on high impact and early childhood aligned professional learning for elementary educators; and developing extended learning opportunities that include two-way relationships and enhanced communication with families and the community.  

Under ESSA, there are four tiers, or levels of evidence – Level 1 - Strong Evidence, Level 2- Moderate Evidence, Level 3 – Promising Evidence, Level 4 - a Rationale. Throughout this guide the level of evidence is prominently displayed. This is a living document and will be subject to continuous revision.