The use of parental input in prekindergarten screening

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Williams, Kathleen T.
Treloar, James H.
Issue Date
Thesis (Ph. D.)
Department of Educational Psychology
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The purpose of this study was to examine the individual and collective relationships between and among sets of predictor variables obtained from an ecological preschool screening model and criterion variables designed to assess performance in kindergarten. A second purpose of this research was to determine the unique contribution of parental input within the ecological preschool screening model. Fall screening included an individually administered standardized test, the Bracken Basic Concept Scale (BBCS), and a structured parent interview, the Minnesota Preschool Inventory (MPI). The BBCS and the Developmental Scale (DEVEL) of the MPI constituted the set of predictor variables. The criterion set of performance measures included a group administered standardized testing procedure, the Metropolitan Readiness Test (MRT), and a teacher rating scale, the Teacher Rating Scale-Spring (TRS-S), completed in the spring of the kindergarten year.Canonical correlation analysis was used to examine the interrelationships between the two sets ofvariables and to determine the best possible combinationof variables for predicting kindergarten achievement. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine the unique contribution of parental input for predicting kindergarten achievement over and above that information supplied by the standardized test.The results of this study supported the use of an ecological model for predicting kindergarten performance. The information gained from parental input and standardized testing contributed significantly and uniquely to the composite of the predictor set. There was both a statistically significant and a meaningfully significant relationship between the screening procedures completed at the beginning of the school year (the BBCS and the DEVEL) and the assessment procedures done at the end of the school year (the MRT and the TRS-S) when these four variables were considered simultaneously.The use of parental input was supported by the multiple regression analyses. Information gained by structured parent interview had something statistically significant, meaningful, and unique to contribute to the prediction of kindergarten performance over and above that information gained from the individually administered standardized test.