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County Program Profile: Riverside
Time Period: 2019–2020
QRIS :: Quality Start Riverside County
Quality Start Riverside County (QSRC) serves a variety of early care and education programs, from public preschool programs, like the California State Preschool Program and Head Start, to privately owned programs, faith-based programs, family child care home providers, and exempt providers offering child care services. Alternative sites such as libraries, home visitation programs, or family resource centers are also served through QSRC. QSRC implements two tracks of participation — the Quality Improvement System (QIS) track and the Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) track. The QIS track allows providers to participate in quality supports through training and technical assistance, while the QRIS track rates programs utilizing the Quality Counts California Rating Matrix and offers coaching along with training and technical assistance. QSRC is administered in collaboration with the Riverside County Office of Education and First 5 Riverside. Since July 2014, more than 350 QRIS sites have participated in QSRC’s quality improvement efforts and have been rated. QSRC utilizes the Quality Counts California (QCC) Rating Matrix to identify and assign a quality rating, based on tier levels of 1–5, through validation of assessments and documentation of program features focusing on three core elements of program quality: 1. Child Development and School Readiness 2. Teachers and Teaching 3. Program Environment Early care and education programs, providing services to children ages zero to five and their families, may be eligible to participate in QSRC and receive access to training, coaching, technical assistance, and quality improvement support incentives and/or materials.
County Contact Information
- California Department of Education
- Proposition 10
- Consortium for Early Learning Services
- Riverside County Office of Education
- California Baptist University
- University of California, Riverside
- County of Riverside Department of Public Social Services (DPSS)
- Riverside University Health System – Department of Public Health
Process to Outreach/Onboard Programs and Providers
Quality Start Riverside County (QSRC) engages participating providers and educators to improve early learning quality and ensures all children have access to high-quality programs. Through an open enrollment process, providers watch the online orientation video, located on the QSRC website, and submit the QSRC Memorandum of Understanding. Once enrolled, providers are connected to a QSRC coach who will navigate them through the QSRC requirements to ensure success in the program.
Quality Improvement Program Support Strategies
As Quality Start Riverside County (QSRC) continues to grow, ongoing quality improvement strategies, such as coaching, training, and quality packages, are provided to ensure all participating providers are successful in the program. Navigation: A QSRC Coach supports onboarding sites to navigate through the QSRC system. Focusing on data collection, QCC Rating Matrix, and quality supports available to QIS track or QRIS track. Coaching: A QSRC Coach supports tier-rated sites by providing individualized coaching resources and technical assistance to guide sites throughout the quality improvement journey through dynamic coaching of reflection and mentorship. The coach works with providers to create a Quality Improvement Plan that is based on unique strengths and identifies areas of opportunity of support. Training: Early Learning Educators have access to attend free QSRC trainings and professional development opportunities.
Local Approach to Offering Financial Incentives and Stipends
Quality Start Riverside County (QSRC) offers financial incentives to support providers to maintain or increase tier levels. Educational Stipend Program: Stipends support early learning educators to obtain and expand their qualifications. The financial stipend incentivizes educators to complete college coursework and professional development hours. Quality Achievement Incentive: Sites that are a Tier 4 or 5 receive a financial incentive to support maintaining a high-quality early learning environment. Providers determine how funds support quality improvements. Quality Tier-Layered Incentive: Sites that are Tiers 2–5 and serve children under the age of six in the Alternative Payment Program or First 5 Riverside Hybrid Alternative Payment Program earn a tier-layered incentive. Providers receive a flat weekly incentive based upon the tier rating.
How Children Are Served by QCC
Children Served by Setting
Overall Child Characteristics and Services Provided
Children’s Races and Ethnicities
QCC Tier Rating Distribution
Language Spoken with Children
Quality Improvement Plan (QIP) Goals
“I received a Social Emotional Toolkit from Quality Start Riverside County. It came with an activity sheet to guide me in using the materials in the toolkit. Everything was well explained and professionally created. We have started to conduct the activities and the children like them very much.” Family Child Care Home ProviderLead Teacher
Riverside Unified School District has been committed to quality improvement, with the sights set on a lofty goal of Tier 5 for all sites. With support from both internal and QSRC Coaching, their programs have made significant gains towards their end goal. In the Spring of 2020 the majority of RUSD’s sites were evaluated; their outcomes were phenomenal. RUSD holds 16 of the 39 State Preschool and Head Start programs that are rated at a Tier 5. They are now committed to growing the three remaining sites they have left that are scored at a Tier 4.