ROCHESTER N.Y. (WROC) — The Children’s Institute, in partnership with the Rochester City School District Office of Early Childhood, released the 25th annual report of the Rochester Early Childhood Assessment Partnership.

This past year’s report involved 2,600 children in over 54 sites and 180 classrooms.

Research Scientist Erinn Duprey said the report shows great consistency in retaining classroom quality.

“We have independent reliable observers go to look at classrooms throughout Rochester’s preschools and we found that classrooms really retained excellence so teachers are really having quality interactions with students and having really high-quality classrooms,” said Duprey.

However, Duprey says only 44% of the 4-year-olds were Kindergarten-ready, which is a decline since before the COVID-19 pandemic. She said the latest results provided pre-pandemic were between 50%-57%.

Ann Marie White, Executive Director of the Children’s Institute, said the drop in numbers may stem from daily family stressors and pandemic-related fatigue. She also suggests families incorporate playtime.

“So what we really want to encourage again is that understanding the power of play and for families whether or not they are in the program or home themselves that really so much learning for children happens through the play and that though you may be looking at a classroom children are playing, also know that children are learning,” said White.

Lisa Traficante-Loncao who is the Director of the Rochester Early Education Center shares how the school plays a part in raising low scores.

“It’s unbiased data. It’s also actionable because at the end of the year I get this data and I am able to look program-wise, I’m able to look at 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds and focus on a goal. Once we have that goal and we present it to our school base, our parents, our staff, then we make a plan on how we are going to achieve those goals,” said Traficante-Loncao.

The data provided in the report allows schools and families to stay on top of what challenges are and what the immediate need for adjustments is. 

If you would like to review the numbers provided in this year’s annual report, you can visit the Children’s Institute’s website.