About the Author
Jason T. Downer, Ph.D., is a senior research scientist at the University of Virginia's Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning in Charlottesville. He is a clinical–community psychologist whose work focuses on the identification and understanding of contextual and relational contributors to young at-risk children's early achievement and social competence. Specifically, Dr. Downer is interested in the role of fathers in children's early learning, as well as the development of observational methods to capture valid, reliable estimates of teacher–child interactions in prekindergarten through elementary classrooms. Dr. Downer also has a keen interest in translating research-to-practice through school-based, classroom-focused interventions.
Ellen C. Frede, Ph.D., Senior Vice President for Early Learning, Research, and Training, Acelero Learning, Inc., 63 West 125th Street, 6th Floor, New York, New York 10027. Until recently, Dr. Frede served as Co-director at the National Institute for Early Education Research. She is a developmental psychologist who specializes in research to inform policy and practice and helped design and administer New Jersey's successful Abbott Preschool Program.
Carollee Howes, Ph.D., is the director of the Center for Improving Child Care Quality, Department of Education, and a professor of the Applied Developmental Psychology doctorate program at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Howes is an internationally recognized developmental psychologist focusing on children's social and emotional development. She has served as a principal investigator on a number of seminal studies in early child care and preschool education, including the National Child Care Staffing Study; the Family and Relative Care Study; the Cost, Quality, and Outcomes Study; and the National Study of Child Care in Low Income Families.
Dr. Howes has been active in public policy for children and families in California as well as across the United States. Her research focuses on children's experiences in child care, their concurrent and long-term outcomes from child care experiences, and child care quality and efforts to improve child care quality. Dr. Howes is the editor of Teaching 4- to 8-Year-Olds: Literacy, Math, Multiculturalism, and Classroom Community (Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co., 2003) and the coeditor of The Promise of Pre-K (Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co., 2009) and Foundations for Teaching Excellence: Connecting Early Childhood Quality Rating, Professional Development, and Competency Systems in States (Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co., 2011).
Dr. Michael LÃ³pez is Executive Director of the National Center for Latino Child & Family Research, which is dedicated to research on issues relevant to practices and policies affecting the lives of Latino children and families. Previously, Dr. LÃ³pez directed the Child Outcomes Research and Evaluation team in the Administration for Children and Families, where he managed a number of largescale national, Head Start research studies, including the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey; the Head Start Transition Evaluation; and the National Head Start Impact Study, a nationally representative, randomized study examining the impact of Head Start on childrenâ€™s school readiness. Dr. LÃ³pezâ€™s current work is focused on applied policy research and programmatic activities on such topics as early childhood care and education; language and literacy development; bilingual education; early childhood prevention and intervention programs; and young childrenâ€™s mental health, with an emphasis on at-risk, low-income, and/or culturally and linguistically diverse populations.
Dr. Susan Landry, a nationally recognized expert in early childhood education, is the founder and director of the Childrenâ€™s Learning Institute. Dr. Landryâ€™s research into environme