Since 2003, the Children’s Learning Institute has managed the development, statewide implementation, and ongoing enhancement of the Texas School Ready Project.
Texas’ signature early childhood quality improvement program, Texas School Ready (TSR) is managed by the Children’s Learning Institute at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). Beginning in 2003 as the Texas Early Education Model (TEEM), TSR is the result of decades of research, implementation, and innovation of targeted interventions that prioritize “school readiness” for at-risk children in Texas. The program realizes this goal through a focus on research-based curriculum, classroom resources, technology-driven child progress monitoring, teacher/staff professional development with one-on-one coaching, and ongoing program evaluation.
TSR’s tools and resources are available at no cost on our online platform CLI Engage. Approximately 1,500 early childhood teachers and 25,000 children are positively impacted by our most intensive model, known as TSR Comprehensive, each year. By the 2020-2021 school year, more than 80,000 early childhood teachers, administrators, educators, and parents use these TSR resources on CLI Engage, positively impacting more than 400,000 children through their school’s access.
The Children’s Learning Institute partners with the Texas Education Agency and Texas Workforce Commission to provide TSR’s programs and resources across the state. View our most recent annual report:
The Texas School Ready project began in 2003 as TEEM, a program we continue to implement today as TSR Comprehensive.
Research Underpinnings of TEEM School Readiness
These best practices, confirmed through multiple studies evaluating the TEEM model and TSR Comprehensive are the foundation of Texas School Ready.
In 2003, the Children’s Learning Institute was designated as the Texas State Center for Early Childhood Development (SCECD) by Governor Rick Perry. The Texas Legislature directed the SCECD under Senate Bill 76 to explore how to better integrate the delivery of early childhood education for three- and four-year-old children at risk for school failure. From this effort, a model was found to be robust enough to implement more widely and to form the basis for a statewide early childhood education program quality rating system of school readiness. Senate Bill 23 charged the SCECD with developing this system for use in determining the effectiveness of early childhood care and education programs for three- and four-year-old children at risk for school failure. Further partnerships at the state, regional, and local level sustained TSR through the present day.
With previous results from major research grants, CLI experimentally confirmed through the TEEM program the powerful and necessary combination of key instructional components that maximize positive change for teachers and children across a wide variety of early childcare programs.
2003: Children’s Learning Institute established as the Texas State Center for Early Childhood Development
2003: Initial TEEM implementation study in 11 Texas communities
2005: Expansion of TEEM implementation into 20 total Texas communities (the program now known as TSR Comprehensive)
2006: Further expansion through funding from the Texas Workforce Commission and the Susan and Michael Dell Foundation
2007: Texas Workforce Commission provides Child Care Quality funds to continue TSR expansion
2009: TSR established the School Readiness Certification System (SRCS, no longer active) as part of the Pre-Kindergarten Expansion grants from Texas Education Agency
2009: The Children’s Learning Institute publishes initial research studies validating the TEEM quality improvement model (What Sets TSR Apart?)
2013: TSR launches remote coaching and professional development to teachers, expanding cost-effective access to quality improvement
2014: In partnership with the Texas Education Agency, the Children’s Learning Institute begins development of a cost-effective, digital delivery system that could disseminate TSR’s tools across the state at no charge to eligible programs (now known as CLI Engage)
2015: CLI Engage launches statewide and the Children’s Learning Institute continues expanding the resources available on the platform
2016: The Children’s Learning Institute begins development of a new coordinated approach to improving the quality of care for children from birth to age three through philanthropic support, based on TSR’s proven pre-K model
2021: Following successful implementation during COVID-19, TSR transitions the TSR Comprehensive program to include formal service delivery to infant and toddler teachers
CLI Engage now serves as the backbone of TSR, delivering the program’s professional development courses, child progress monitoring tools, supplemental lessons, and more. State investment in CLI Engage has expanded our impact tenfold, allowing us to deliver TSR’s quality resources at no cost to a wide range of programs across Texas.
By the 2020-2021 school year, more than 80,000 early childhood teachers, administrators, educators, and parents use the TSR tools and resources hosted on CLI Engage. More than 400,000 children were positively impacted through their school’s access of TSR’s resources on CLI Engage.