The EDI is a teacher completed instrument developed at McMaster University intended to measure children’s ability to meet age-appropriate development expectations at school entry. This instrument gathers information on individual children in the areas of physical health and well-being, social competence, emotional maturity, language & cognitive development, and communication skills & general knowledge. The EDI data collected is compiled into school, school jurisdiction and provincial groups. This data encourages the monitoring and support of the developmental health of the young learners in our community, province, country and across nations.
In the spring of 2016 most Kindergarten teachers across Horizon School Division participated in completing the EDI for their students. Due to some of the small (below 10 children) sample size kindergarten classes, not all data was analyzed. The following schools’ data was analyzed: Dr. Hamman, Milk River Elementary, Taber Central, Vauxhall Elementary and Warner School. Overall, children in Horizon School Division are less vulnerable in all areas of development as compared to the Alberta population. Although still below the provincial population, it is important to note the results indicate that children in Horizon have higher vulnerability in the areas of language & cognitive development and communication skills & general knowledge. The report also included the percentage of children who are vulnerable in at least one or two EDI domains. 18% of our children are vulnerable in at least one domain and 10% are vulnerable on at least two domains.
In response to the EDI results, Horizon continues to support early intervention in all areas of development for children. Additional funding is provided to schools for kindergarten through grade three to support smaller class sizes, early literacy and numeracy intervention opportunities for children, and educational assistant support, as needed. Horizon also provides opportunity for children to participate in the Early Learning programs prior to entering kindergarten. As well, jurisdiction wide developmental checkups are available each spring to screen children prior to kindergarten for possible developmental delays so early intervention can be initiated.
The EDI results provide evidence of the need to implement additional supports for our youngest learners to help them on their way to better personal outcomes in learning, behaviour and lifelong health.