The mission of the Virginia Early Childhood Policy Initiative (VECPI) at ODU is to develop materials and conduct original research that will lead to positive changes in early childhood policy and to provide useful information to parents, communities, schools and others directly involved with the wellbeing of Virginia's young children.
- Host annual summits that bring together experts in various fields pertinent to early childhood to discuss the prevalent and current issues in early childhood in Virginia.
- Act as a hub through which different programs and colleges across the university can come together to leverage their unique skill sets as they relate to early childhood issues.
- Develop relationships with early childhood experts from higher education institutions, key government positions, and others known to consistently advocate for young children in Virginia and other states.
- Provide early childhood scholars with the means to communicate their research findings with policy makers so that best practices supported by empirical study can be legislated and systematically evaluated.
- Develop and maintain a web-based early childhood resource center.
- Establish a well-organized repository for reports and data from various reputable early childhood groups.
- Host links to early childhood organizations' web sites.
- Provide resources specifically designed for use by child care centers and home day care providers. Some resources will be designed by the VECPC, while others will be drawn from other early childhood organizations.
- Assist the Virginia Preschool Initiative.
- Clearly understand program goals, requirements, and initiatives.
- Within individual school divisions, identify the programs being implemented, the classrooms in which they are being implemented, and the characteristics of the student populations served by these programs.
- Examine current curricula and assessments being implemented.
- Offer to create a clear report focused on of the numbers and characteristics of those served, the curricula used, and assessments implemented.
- Consider developing more comprehensive, psychometrically sound assessments and evaluation plans to better meet program goals.
- Generate reports about the state of early childhood in Virginia.
- These reports will be produced as requested or needed.
- Assist Virginia organizations providing services for children aged birth-five in developing assessment plans, collecting assessment data, and conducting data analysis/interpretation.
- Conduct statewide research initiatives aimed at learning more about best practices in early childhood.
- Foster graduate research assistantships and post-doctoral fellowships to support students as we work collaboratively toward acquiring and maintaining a strong reputation for leading edge early childhood scholarship.