McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership Publications

Document Type

Executive Summary

Publication Date

Summer 7-2-2009


The American education system developed in separate sectors at different times (early childhood, K-12, and postsecondary), creating a disconnected chain of educational experiences for students. Recently, work has begun to integrate these sectors into a coherent whole and the concept of a learning continuum has emerged. A learning continuum aligns curriculum and instruction across developmental levels and grades, shares goals for student readiness and proficiency, and communicates and coordinates among caregivers, educators, and families to support student learning. To study the current status of learning continuum activities in Illinois, a panel of early childhood and K-12 representatives convened in 2008 to form a Leadership to Integrate the Learning Continuum (LINC) Advisory Group. The group recommended policies and practices to create a strong learning continuum based, in part, on a statewide survey of current early childhood/K-12 collaborations.

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