The CHEQ: Information for Teachers

At a Glance: Information for Teachers

What is The Childhood Experiences Questionnaire (CHEQ)?

The CHEQ is an innovative way to capture and report on children’s experiences in their early environments. Research has shown that a child’s early experiences affect their cognitive, social and emotional development and ultimately their long-term health and well-being. The CHEQ focuses on experiences in specific areas of development that are strongly linked to children’s health and well-being, education and social outcomes. The information from the CHEQ helps communities understand how to support children and families prior to Kindergarten; it also helps schools with individual, classroom and school level planning.

How do the CHEQ & EDI work together?

Parents of Kindergarten children from participating schools across British Columbia complete the CHEQ at the beginning of the school year. Teachers complete the Early Development Instrument (EDI) the following February. The CHEQ was developed as a companion instrument to the EDI, as a way of providing context to the information schools and communities receive about their children’s skills and competencies from the EDI. Together, CHEQ and EDI give us information from both parents and teachers and allow us to learn how the experiences children are having relate to areas of their development.  

How were principals and teachers involved in the development of the CHEQ?

The CHEQ was developed together with BC’s teachers, administrators and community stakeholders, as well as child development researchers, in order to determine the most important areas of experiences to assess, as well as which questions would be most valuable to schools and districts.

How is the CHEQ administered?

There is a trained CHEQ Leader at each school (for example an administrator, teacher or school staff member) who is responsible for administering the CHEQ. Schools organize an opportunity for parents of incoming Kindergarten students to complete the CHEQ in the first few weeks of the school year, usually during the gradual entry process or as part of existing events. If parents are not able to attend the school event, they can also complete the CHEQ online at home. As soon as a parent completes the CHEQ, schools will have instant, online access to individual level CHEQ reports as well as aggregated classroom and school level reports. HELP knows the value in providing this information as soon as possible so that it can be most useful to schools and has worked to develop a sophisticated and secure e-system to achieve this goal.  

What do I have to do and when?

Principals and teachers can work together to determine who is best able to take on the role of the school’s CHEQ Leader. At some schools this may be the principal, at others it may be a Kindergarten teacher or school staff. Your school’s CHEQ Leader will be trained to use our e-system to facilitate parents completing the CHEQ, and to access reports and share them with staff.

How is information from the CHEQ reported?

Information collected using the CHEQ is instantly summarized into individual, classroom and school level reports using HELP’s innovative and secure e-system. These reports provide principals and teachers with detailed overviews of their new group of Kindergarten students and insight into the specific needs of each class. As well, data from these reports can help inform planning for the school year. Information is also summarized at the district level, and these reports highlight areas of development children are experiencing prior to Kindergarten. Finally, district reports can assist regional and provincial stakeholders in making evidence-based decisions about programming and services for young children and families in their communities.

How is information protected?

The protection of children's and families' privacy is something HELP takes very seriously. Please visit our Safeguarding Personal Information page to learn more about how we protect the information that parents provide on the CHEQ.