Kindergarten Transition Survey

This report summarizes the findings of a survey of 755 families across the State of Hawai‘i about their experiences in helping their children transition into kindergarten programs. These children started kindergarten at 24 different elementary schools.

Parents were asked about the settings in which their children spent time before entering kindergarten. Most children attended some form of pre-school (70%), and/or were cared for at home (38%). 7% of children spent time in the care of family or friends. A small share of children spent time in Licensed Home-Based Care (3%), or in a Family Child Interaction Learning Program (2%). (Children could be in more than one setting.)

Childcare and Parenting Support Needs Survey

This report summarizes the findings resulting from a survey of over 420 parents of keiki 5 years old and younger in Hawai‘i. The aim of the survey was to determine parents’ needs for childcare and other parenting support services and the extent to which parents report being aware of and able to access the care and services they need. 

Systems Map

The Systems Mapping process was facilitated by Scott Spann (Innate Strategies) and involved over 80 public and private partners in 2012.  The map documents the array of systems’ components within Hawaii’s early childhood system.  The map spotlights potential levers of change that would have the greatest impact for improving the lives our youngest children.


Click the map above to see an enlarged, PDF version of the map. You can learn more about the process followed during the mapping process by reading and watching the videos on the post “Building Shared Understanding Through System Mapping.”

Early Childhood Indicator Project

The Executive Office on Early Learning, with funding from the Department of Health, commissioned consultants JoAnn Farnsworth and Kathie Reinhardt to do the Early Childhood Indicator Project. This project involved an analysis of current data capacity, development of an indicator framework and recommendations for implementation. This project was completed on September 30, 2012. The analysis will be used by the Governor’s Office, State departmental leads and other policy makers to improve utilization and access to adequate data for the purposes of improving health, safety and school readiness outcomes for our youngest children.

Indicator Project Final Report



Early Childhood “Listening Tour”

In March 2012, the Collaborative Leaders Network (CLN) and the Executive Office on Early Learning commissioned Storyline Consulting to conduct a “listening tour” that would bring a broader range of individuals and communities into statewide planning activities. Through interviews and focus groups, Storyline Consulting gathered testimony from a diverse group of individuals who care for children, provide them with services, or advocate for them or their families.

The people that agreed to participate in this listening tour have provided a rich picture of the work being done—and the additional support that is needed—for children in Hawaii. They represent grandparents, parents, community volunteers, current and retired educators, service providers, childcare providers, and policymakers, all of whom share a common interest in improving children’s lives. Their stories help give texture and substance to Hawaii’s early childhood data points, and highlight the day-to-day decisions and choices made by families and communities about the children in their care.

It is the intention of those involved with this project that the stories and perspectives included in this preliminary report will build on successful past and current work, and enhance ongoing efforts on behalf of children and families.

Early Childhood “Listening Tour”

Fiscal Mapping Project

Moving toward a comprehensive early childhood system in Hawaii: An analysis of the fiscal resources supporting young children, prenatal to age five and their families, in fiscal 2011

by Lori Connors-Tadros, Torey Silloway, Jennifer Mayman and Melissa Dahlin

March 19, 2012

A strong early childhood development system that is well funded, fully coordinated, and highly accountable is essential to Hawaii’s long-term economic health. Hawaii’s Early Learning Council (ELC) has established a framework for a comprehensive early childhood system, including goals and strategies for ensuring all children are healthy and ready to succeed in school. The ELC commissioned this study of fiscal resources to provide a detailed account of fiscal 2011 federal and state expenditures on programs supporting children, prenatal to age five, and their families in Hawaii.

The report analyzes how funding sources and financing strategies are used to support Hawaii’s goals for young children. It also highlights the key role private dollars and parent fees play in the funding mix for early childhood services and supports. The report summarizes how funds align with Hawaii’s framework for an early childhood system; which agencies control key funding sources; and to what extent funding comes from federal, state, or private sources.

With very limited resources due, in part, to the recent economic recession, the state has worked hard to provide critical services to vulnerable children. Hawaii is pursuing several effective financing strategies, including significant coordination of key services and training, collaboration among programs, and investment of private dollars to build quality and infrastructure. Yet funding for the system of services that will effectively prepare young children to be successful in school and life is not adequate given the magnitude of need in the State for early childhood services. Therefore, leaders will want to use the study findings to help guide decisions on the system elements and financing strategies that are needed to develop and sustain a high-quality early childhood system, including the possibility of new state investments.

Fiscal Mapping Project Report


Want to learn more?

Visit these websites for more information about early childhood development


Harvard Center on the Developing Child

Zero to Three

Chapin Hall

American Academy of Pediatrics

Sesame Workshop

Kids Count Data Center