Operations and Policy: Supporting a High-Quality Environment

We are committed to providing policy and operational supports that aid programs in delivering the highest quality care and education to 3-K for All and Pre-K for All students.

Guidance on Coronavirus

The resources below provide guidance on coronavirus including cleaning procedures, general updates on the virus and a letter for you to use to reassure your community.

Policy Handbooks

The Policy Handbook highlights operational guidance and best practices on a variety of topics, including health and safety, facilities and materials, staffing, general program oversight, and instructional programming to support leaders, teachers, and staff in operating high-quality early childhood classrooms.

Please note that there are separate handbooks for NYC Early Education Centers (NYCEECs) and District Schools/Pre-K Centers. Please refer to the handbook that provides guidance for your program type to ensure you are adhering to the appropriate policies/regulations.

If you have any questions about the guidance provided, please contact EarlyChildhoodPolicy@schools.nyc.gov.

Early Childhood Framework for Quality (EFQ): Supporting Resources

The resources below have been created to support your training in and use of the Early Childhood Framework for Quality (EFQ). If you have any questions about the EFQ or the resources below, please contact EFQ@schools.nyc.gov.

EFQ Translations

EFQ - Family Child Care

EFQ Glossary

EFQ Research Paragraphs

Webinar: An Introduction to the Early Childhood Framework for Quality

This webinar is an introduction to the EFQ that delves into the content and organization of the EFQ, as well as the role it plays in our system, and differentiation from other standards and frameworks in early childhood education. 

Webinar: Facilitating an EFQ Professional Learning Session

This webinar guides anyone who would want to facilitate an EFQ professional learning session. 

Crosswalks with CLASS and ECERS-R

These charts outline how the practices listed in the EFQ align with the ECERS-R and the CLASS. You may use them when reviewing your ECERS-R and CLASS scores, and using the EFQ to engage in goal-setting with your team. 

Statement on Positive Behavior Guidance

Programs are responsible for structuring an environment and approaching interactions in ways that build positive relationships with children and families. Children and families should feel secure, supported, and recognized as important members of a program’s community. The Statement on Positive Behavior Guidance outlines the expectations and guidelines around supporting positive behavior in a developmentally appropriate way.

Administration & Finance

NYCEEC leaders play a key role in shaping a vision for how their programs will help students learn and grow within the community each program serves. These resources will help support the management of administrative systems and tasks. 


NYCEEC leaders ensure their programs are staffed with teachers who meet all requirements and can provide the highest quality care for students. These resources will help support your program in maintaining cleared and qualified staff.

If you have any questions about staffing requirements, please email EarlyChildhoodPolicy@schools.nyc.gov.

Registration & Attendance

Everyone works toward the shared goal of preparing students for success in school and beyond, and this begins with a student's first day in the classroom. Use resources here to ensure proper registration, enrollment, and attendance of students in NYCEECs.

Student Record Transfer

As school years come to an end, we work to transfer each child’s cumulative records to the kindergarten they will attend next school year. Due to the transition to remote learning in spring 2020, this year’s transfer of records from pre-K programs to elementary schools will be postponed indefinitely. Please note that in the place of the typical record transfer process, pre-K teaching teams should support families in completing an End of Year Questionnaire, which is designed to empower families to document key information about their child and their pre-K experience. Teaching teams should encourage families to keep this information to share with their child’s kindergarten teacher in the fall. For more information regarding supporting the transition from pre-K to kindergarten remotely, see our Supporting the Transition from Pre-K to Kindergarten Remotely guide and see this sample family questionnaire

If you have additional questions, please reach out to deceinstruction@schools.nyc.gov.

Health & Safety

NYCEECs provide a safe and healthy environment as the foundation for children as they learn and grow. These resources will help support programs’ efforts towards this goal.

Please share with your families the one-pager below, which provides guidance for families to avoid lead poisoning.

Web Enrollment System (WES) - for EarlyLearn Programs

Please use this link to access the Web Enrollment System. If you have any questions about WES, please email WESHelp@schools.nyc.gov.

School Readiness Commitment - for Head Start Programs

In the 2019-2020 school year, we will continue to adopt the Office of Head Start's definition of school readiness: "School Readiness means that children are ready for school, families are ready to support their children's learning, and schools are ready for children."

DECE has worked with a variety of stakeholders to develop School Readiness Goals for infants (birth to 18 months), toddlers (18 to 36 months), and preschool children (3s and 4s). Programs can adopt the goals as developed by DECE or adapt them to fit the needs of their community, families, and children; this includes consulting families of enrolled children in the adaptation or adoption of goals, as per the Head Start Program Performance Standards.

The School Readiness Goals Implementation Guidance includes DECE's School Readiness Goals (SRGs), how DECE SRGs were developed, Core Strategies to Support School Readiness, and SRG alignment with Teaching Strategies GOLD, COR Advantage, and Ounce/Work Sampling System.

For questions regarding this resource, please email DECEInstruction@schools.nyc.gov.

Additional Resources

The below resource provides families with information on their preschool options after Early Intervention, including 3-K for All and/or referring to the Committee on Special Education.

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