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Welcome to the Winter 2017 EDI Newsletter

The Early Development Instrument team is proud to share a new story about the EDI's history in Nova Scotia.

This edition of the newsletter also features the results from CIHR's video awards competition, recent EDI reports and publications and a spotlight on the mental health of Manitoba's children.

EDI video named runner-up for CIHR award

The EDI and the Early Years video was a runner-up for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research 2016 IHDCYH Talks Video Competition.

The EDI team would like to thank everyone who took the time to vote for our video and to all who shared it with others. We are incredibly proud of our work and are grateful for the support.

Congratulations to the competition winner, Dr. Christine Chambers from the IWK Health Centre. Congratulations to the other runners-up, Pia Wintermark from McGill University and Sujane Kandasamy from McMaster University. 

History of the EDI in Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia’s experience with the EDI began over ten years ago, with the Understanding the Early Years (UEY), the national initiative aimed at strengthening the capacity of communities to use quality local research to help them make decisions to enhance children’s lives. Five communities in Nova Scotia were part of this initiative between 2006 and 2012, which included implementing the EDI data collection within schools in those communities. Along with the UEY initiative sites, several school boards in the province undertook EDI data collection around this time.
In 2012- 2013, the Province committed to consultation and the development of an integrated approach to early childhood development services and programs for Nova Scotia. This resulted in the creation of an Early Years Branch within the new Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. The expanded mandate of the Department was implemented in recognition of the need for an integrated system that supports the learning, care and well-being of children through the prenatal period to age six years and their families. The Early Years Branch established a collaboration with the Margaret and Wallace McCain Family Foundation for the implementation of Early Years Centres in Nova Scotia, bringing together existing programs and services such as child care, family drop-in, early learning, parenting supports, health services, and early identification and intervention programs within a public school setting. There are currently eight Early Years Centres located in schools across the province, four of which opened in 2014, and a further four centres opened in 2016.
In 2013, the first provincial wide implementation of the EDI was undertaken, which included all Primary students across the eight school boards. Since then, the EDI is implemented on a biannual basis, with the second implementation province-wide taking place in 2015. For those results, the 2013 data was used to create the NS baseline, which allowed the 2015 results to be compared to a NS baseline for the first time. The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development partners with the school boards to collect the data. In addition, one school board collects EDI data independently on offset years.

Part of the collaboration with the Margaret and Wallace McCain Family Foundation for the implementation of the Early Years Centres involves a four-year evaluation of the Early Years Centres which began in 2015. In addition, a special collection of the EDI was carried out in 2016 in eight schools where Early Years Centres are located, to explore and determine how the “dose” of early learning exposure through the programs and services in the Early Years Centres may influence the results of the EDI for that population of children.
The Department continues to work with other departments and with community partners to understand developmental change or trends in populations of children and to improve collaborative initiatives to improve outcomes for children and communities. 

Submitted by the Nova Scotia Department of Education and Early Child Development.

The Mental Health of Manitoba's Children

A new University of Manitoba project examined the prevalence of mental disorders in children and found 14% are living with at least one.

In addition, the report studied the relationship between mental health and educational outcomes, as measured by the EDI. The project also explored the factors contributing to the development of mental disorders in children.

The results will contribute to the Healthy Child Manitoba Strategy, the Provincial Mental Health Strategy and a Child and Youth Mental Health Strategy.

A four-page summary of the full report is available, along with a video of lead author Dr. Mariette Chartier discussing the report.

Learn more about the EDI at upcoming conferences

The EDI is well represented at a variety of upcoming conferences. If you are attending any please visit us to learn more about the exciting research we are working on.

Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) - Austin, Texas April 6-8, 2017

Symposium: Development and Health of Young Children in the Neighbourhood Context: A (Canadian) Population-Wide Program of Research

Thu, April 6, 2:00 to 3:30pm, Austin Convention Center, Meeting Room 9C
  • Creating a Pan-Canadian Database of Child Development and Socioeconomic Indicators for Research
  • Development of a Pan-Canadian Socioeconomic Index Tailored to Child Development Outcomes
  • Is Developmental Health of Young Canadians Changing Over Time? Jurisdictional Differences in Recent Trends
  • Exploring the Unique Role of Socioeconomic Status in the Development of Foreign-Born Children in British Columbia
  • Can Early Development Instrument Results be used to Explore Social Determinants of Development for Children with Special Needs?
International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR) - San Francisco, California May 10-13, 2017 
  • Understanding Prevalence and Kindergarten Behavioural Profiles of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Public Health - Halifax, Nova Scotia June 6-8, 2017
  • Gender, Socioeconomic Status and Early Child Development: Are Boys from Low-SES Neighbourhoods Getting Left Behind?
  • On Track: Examination of Demographics of Ontario Kindergarten Children with Adequate Development
International Society for Child Indicators (ISCI) - Montreal, Quebec June 28-30, 2017
  • Linking Pan-Canadian Indicators 
    of Developmental Health with Socioeconomic and Administrative Data
  • Prevalence and Geographical Variation of Anxious Behaviour and Comorbidity Problems in Children at School Entry Using Teacher-Reported Population-Level Data Over Time in Ontario
  • What’s New in the Field of Measuring Early Child Development: Methodological and Empirical Advances in the Context of New Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
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EDI in the News
Manitoba releases 2014-15 EDI Report
The report includes results from all six collections of the EDI in Manitoba and indicates the trend over time.
  • Vulnerability decreased for Emotional Maturity and Language & Cognitive Development
  • Vulnerability stayed stable for Physical Health & Well-being and Communication Skills & General Knowledge
  • Vulnerability increased for Social Competence
2014-15 school division, school and community-level reports are anticipated for public release in Spring 2017. Community-level reports for previous EDI collections are available online.
City of Toronto releases 2014-15 EDI results
Vulnerability is decreasing in Toronto. That's the major takeaway from a report produced by Toronto Public Health

The City of Toronto also posted their 2014-15 results in a comprehensive report created by the Offord Centre.

More information on the EDI in Toronto can be accessed through their website.
EDI used in Toronto's Raising the Village
Are children and families experiencing good outcomes? That's the question the Toronto Child & Family Network is trying to answer in a new report. Each domain of the EDI was included in the report and results for Toronto are provided.
Latest EDI Publications
Directions Evidence and Policy Research Group, LLP. (2016). Assessing potential bias in population level research with Aboriginal children: Literature review, psychometric, and administration report. Vancouver, BC.

Graham, M. R., Brownell, M., Chateau, D. G., Dragan, R. D., Burchill, C., & Fransoo, R. R. (2016). Neurodevelopmental assessment in kindergarten in children exposed to general anesthesia before the age of 4 years: A retrospective matched cohort study. Anesthesiology, 125, 667-677. 

Mousavi. A., & Krishnan, V. (2016). Measurement invariance of Early Development Instrument (EDI) domain scores across gender and ESL status. Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 62, 288-305.

Tzoumakis, S., Dean, K., Green M. J., Zheng, C., Kariuki, M., Harris, F.,... & Laurens, K. R. (2017). The impact of parental offending on offspring aggression in early childhood: a population-based record linkage study. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 1-11. 

Webb, S., Janus, M., Raos, R., Brownell, M., Forer, B.,... & Muhajarine, N. (2016). Neighbourhood socioeconomic status indices and early childhood development. SSM - Population Health, 3, 48-56.

Youmans, A. S., Kirby, J. R., & Freeman, J. G. (2017). How effectively does the full-day, play-based kindergarten programme in Ontario promote self-regulation, literacy, and numeracy? Early Child Development and Care, 1-13.
Copyright © 2017 Offord Centre for Child Studies, All rights reserved.

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