August 1, 2013

Eight years of results show SPARK Ohio children begin school better prepared to succeed

For the eighth year in a row, evaluation results have shown that SPARK Ohio children begin school better prepared to succeed than their peers.

While the progress of SPARK children and families is assessed in several ways, one measurement used compares the kindergarten entrance assessment scores of SPARK participants with the scores of non-SPARK children in the same classrooms. In Ohio’s public schools, children beginning kindergarten are evaluated using the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment—Literacy (KRA-L), which measures the child’s mastery of basic skills that are important for learning to read.

On average, SPARK children who began kindergarten in 2012 scored 18.9 on the KRA-L, versus 17.1 for non-SPARK children in the same classrooms. SPARK children have outscored their non-SPARK peers on the KRA-L every year since 2005 (when the first SPARK children began kindergarten), to a statistically significant degree.

The Sisters of Charity Foundation of Canton, which is a ministry of the Sisters of Charity Health System, is SPARK Ohio’s managing organization.

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From its Cleveland headquarters, the Sisters of Charity Health System provides oversight, leadership and strategic direction to more than 20 organizations responding to community needs in Canton and Cleveland, Ohio, and South Carolina.

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