Thursday, April 22 to Monday, May 31

Child Care Providers-You have been hit hard during this pandemic and we hear you!  Rating extensions and supports are now available.  Learn more!

Getting Started

Great Start to Quality uses the Program Quality Assessment (PQA) tool for on-site assessments. The tool used for the program will be at least one of the following: 
From the HighScope Educational Research Foundation: 
  • The Infant-Toddler PQA 
  • The Preschool PQA 
  • The Family Child Care PQA 

From the Weikart Center for Youth Program Development: 

  • The School-Age PQA with Extended Observation Scales 

The best way to prepare for an on-site assessment is to look at the PQA before the observation. All levels in each row show the indicators and examples. To get a copy of a PQA:

If the program receives a 4 or 5 Star validation, it will be required to have an on-site assessment before receiving a published rating.  

On-site assessment includes:

  • A member of the Assessment Team will contact the program to gather information and answer any questions.
  • The on-site assessment is unannounced during a scheduled window of time. The goal is to complete the assessment during a typical day at the program. The program has the chance to give a small number of dates that may not be a typical day (i.e. field trip days).
  • If the program is not able to or chooses not to have the on-site assessment completed at that time, it will be eligible to receive a 3 Star until it is ready to complete the process.
  • After the on-site assessment is complete, the program will receive results from a Quality Improvement Consultant from your local Great Start to Quality Resource Center.

What to Expect