New America's Early Ed Update newsletter.

On Tuesday, February 25 at 6:30 pm, New America NYC presents A New Lens on Teaching. And on Thursday, February 27 at 10 am New America’s Education Policy Program and Open Technology Institute presents Connected Communities in an Age of Digital Learning.

Are you interested in working at New America? We’re looking for an early education program associate to work on preK-3rd grade projects and a summer policy intern.

For our latest PreK-12 content visit EdCentral. You’ll also find our dedicated early ed (PreK-3rd) page for more news and analysis. We’d love to get your thoughts and ideas, email us with comments or story ideas at early@edcentral.org.

— Lisa Guernsey and Laura Bornfreund

Report Finds Misalignments in Early Education Data

Data are often the red-headed stepchildren of education programs. Clare McCann and Alex Holt explore a new report the patchwork of early education data that states maintain.

Why Early Education Investments Are the Least “Socialist” of Social Programs

Conor Williams asks why the federal government hasn’t made a larger investment in early ed, despite a general research consensus extolling early education investments.

Education: A Family Affair

Conor Williams explains why it’s important to remember the human side of the education universe.

This Week in Early Ed News

Pre-K expansion — City & State asks if kindergarten will be lost in the New York pre-k debate. In Indiana, Chalkbeat writes about the stagnation of one of Gov. Mike Pence’s top legislative priorities: a preschool pilot program. “The program that would have been created by House Bill 1004 was set aside today by the Senate Education Committee, which preferred to hand the idea off to a legislative summer committee for more study.” And in New Mexico, a panel has blocked an early childhood initiative.

Teacher evaluations — A bill to tie standardized tests to teacher evaluations was defeated in the Washington state senate, reports the SF Gate. “Washington state has a waiver from provisions of the so-called No Child Left Behind law. It could lose the waiver and some federal money by not changing the current law, which only suggests the tests be used in evaluations instead of mandating them.”

Common Core — In Washington, D.C., a group of charters and traditional schools are collaborating around the Common Core and college- and career-ready standards. EdSource writes about how the Common Core State Standards are bringing big changes to elementary level mathematics. “While the old standards were often criticized for an excessive reliance on memorizing certain facts or procedures, the new standards routinely call for students to solve problems that require a strong grasp of mathematical concepts and to explain their reasoning.” These changes bring challenges to both students and teachers.

Also worth noting — ReadyNation and America’s Edge have merged, creating a unified voice for kids… Next Generation blogs about newly released PISA data that shows among children from highly developed countries that attended at least a year of preschool, PISA scores were 53 points higher in mathematics… When the nation’s governors converged in D.C. last week, early ed was part of the discussion, according to the National Governors Association.