Needs Assessment Framework
An important component of the ECCS system-building process is the identification of unmet or inadequately met needs and existing assets or resources. This guide is designed to assist the ECCS grantees explore some of the critical issues related to such an assessment.
While some additional data collection may be needed to complete this process, it is likely that there are reports and other materials available that may provide answers to many of your assessment questions. ECCS planning group participants may be aware of these documents and/or may have important information about needs and assets garnered from their experience in the early childhood field.
It is important to be selective about the information you seek, focusing on the issues that you plan to address. The goal is to identify the areas that are going well, to examine present challenges and then to determine the concrete steps the planning group can take to strengthen the effectiveness and comprehensiveness of the early childhood system.
Key Questions for Each of the Critical Issues: To examine critical ECCS issues through assets and needs assessment, it is useful to focus on the following questions:
- What are we doing in this area?
- What is working well about it? How do we know this (i.e. do we have performance measures, evaluations, customer feedback?)?
- What are the challenges? (E.g., a need for more extensive geographic coverage, a need for the involvement of additional agencies or organizations, better evidence of the effectiveness of current activity, a need to combine funding streams to encourage the integration of services, improved mechanisms to reach special population groups?)
|Focus Area||Critical Issues Related to Developing a Comprehensive Early Childhood System|
|Mental Health/Social and Emotional Development||
|Child Care/Early Childhood Education||