Kindergarten Readiness Assessment Produces Mixed Results about School Preparedness

News Release, Maryland State Department of Education

BALTIMORE  – The results of Maryland’s 2019 Kindergarten Readiness Assessment (KRA) show that more than half of the local school systems in Maryland made progress in school readiness over the past year, but overall kindergarten readiness across the State remained the same.

“Preparing students to succeed in kindergarten is a key goal of our early childhood learning efforts, so we will be taking these results very seriously as a guide for improving our programs,” said Dr. Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools. “We will continue to engage families from the time their child is born so that the child comes to school prepared with the knowledge, skills, and behaviors needed for success.”

Kindergarten teachers at the start of the academic year administered this year’s KRA to students. The assessment measured students’ mastery of prekindergarten skills, knowledge, and behaviors across four domains: language and literacy, mathematics, social foundations, and physical well-being and motor development.

Like last year, local school systems had the choice of administering the assessment to all of their kindergarten students, in a census administration or choosing to administer to a sample of students in each kindergarten classroom. Eighteen school systems, Maryland School for the Blind, and Maryland School for the Deaf opted for a full census administration of the test. Six school systems chose a combination of census administration in designated schools and a random sample in their remaining schools.

Initial State results show the following:

  • Approximately 47 percent of Maryland’s kindergarten students began the year demonstrating readiness, with the foundational skills and behaviors that prepare them for curriculum based on the kindergarten standards.
  • Approximately 32 percent of students are approaching readiness, having mastered some of the foundational skills and behaviors needed to succeed.
  • Approximately 21 percent of students are emerging readiness, with a minimal grasp of the foundational skills and behaviors needed to succeed in kindergarten.

A more detailed analysis of the KRA results will be shared at the February meeting of the Maryland State Board of Education.

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