The Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Program (VKRP), based at The University of Virginia, aims to provide a comprehensive picture of each student's kindergarten readiness. VKRP has selected a series of assessments that are administered during the first four to six weeks of kindergarten entry. Data from the assessments can be beneficial for divisions, educators, and families to support young students' learning during the kindergarten school year and beyond.
In connection with PALS, which assesses students' literacy skills, VKRP expands the assessment to add a focus on math, self regulation, and social skills. Research focused on kindergarten readiness shows that all four areas are critical for students' later success in school and life.
In 2014, faculty and researchers at the University of Virginia found that 34% of Virginia's children entering kindergarten arrive unprepared in one or more of these critical learning domains.
Findings from a study conducted by The University of Virginia in 2014 found that one in three students are not prepared in the areas of mathematics, self-regulation, social skills, or literacy. Although, some of these children will catch up with their peers, readiness gaps present when children start school are likely to persist and even widen over time. Children falling below the benchmark are struggling to master basic skills such as identifying letters, connecting letters to letter sounds, counting to 20, naming basic shapes, following a teacher's instructions, persisting on a new task, and sharing with classmates. These results were shared with the Virginia State Legislature, and the statewide implementation of VKRP began.
The mission of VKRP is to assess students' skills across key early learning areas and provide educators with information and resources to support each individual student for school success. In addition to assessments, VKRP also provides integrated reports of kindergarten-entry skills and instructional resources at the student and classroom levels. In 2016, one third of all school divisions in Virginia participated in VKRP. Learn more about how your school division can sign on.