The project works to expand and improve quality early childhood experiences for all young children in Philadelphia, especially those exposed to factors that threaten well-being and early school success. To this end, Penn Faculty work on multiple levels to collaborate with public service agencies and address the needs of the “whole” child.
By analyzing data across multiple public records and agencies, researchers are able to provide policymakers with a nuanced snapshot of the effects of poverty on children’s lives. This “Big Data” approach also helps policymakers design more effective interventions. For example, the project team worked with the City of Philadelphia to map communities of high need for pre-K services, based on several risk factors. The work is not only promising for the children of Philadelphia, but also can be used as a model in cities nationwide.