Around this time every year the Office of Head Start (OHS) releases its annual CLASS report, and this year was no exception. A National Overview of Grantee CLASS Scores in 2017 is now available. The report summarizes data collected during Office of Head Start (OHS) on-site reviews of grantees during the 2016-2017 program year. The use of CLASS in Head Start serves multiple purposes, one of which is its use as part of the Designation Renewal System (DRS). Many people – particularly those whose program had a CLASS review in the year being reported – are interested to know the threshold for the lowest 10% of CLASS scores in each threshold. The 2017 threshold is as follows:

  • Emotional Support – 5.7024
  • Classroom Organization – 5.3264
  • Instructional Support – 2.3095

There are two conditions under which grantees may be required to compete for funding due to the CLASS condition of DRS: 1) If their score on any of the domains are below the set minimum threshold (a score of 4 in Emotional Support, 3 in Classroom Organization, and 2 for Instructional Support), or 2) scores fall in the lowest 10% of grantees reviewed. (If you have questions about the use of CLASS in Head Start there are helpful resources on ECLKC.) If your program received a CLASS review in 2017 and you fall into one of these two categories, we invite you to follow our DRS Updates blog where we discuss all things DRS (and check out our recent post, Could DRS Round 7 Follow on the Heels for Round 6?). Back in December OHS released a request for comment related to the CLASS condition of DRS. While there could be some changes in the future, the current system remains in place.

With the launch of the Aligned Monitoring System 2.0 (AMS 2.0) last fall, CLASS remained a strong component of monitoring. We’ve spent some time talking recently about assessment readiness, particularly for Focus Area Two reviews where the structure and format feel quite different than the past. But, what about preparing for a CLASS review?

We believe that one of the best ways to prepare for a federal CLASS review is with a practice CLASS review. Identifying a trained, reliable CLASS reviewer and having that person conduct observations and provide feedback to your program will be a significant asset to your readiness. You will be able to leverage information learned to make improvements to your program in advance of your official CLASS review.

Foundations for Families consultants are deeply knowledgeable about Head Start and Early Head Start and are skilled at providing assessments and guidance to grantees to help ensure successful federal reviews. As part of these services, we provide CLASS observations by our trained, reliable CLASS experts. One of our CLASS experts can conduct CLASS observations and scores in a sample of your program’s classrooms and share those results with you. We’ll highlight your strengths while helping you to focus your attention on areas in need of support. If you’re interested to learn more, please feel free to be in touch.

Thank you.

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