Quality Counts SCC

friends hug

The Quality Counts SCC lets families know where a program is on the path to excellence, builds on what the program is already doing well and takes those strengths to the next level of quality.

Using a 5 Tier Rating System:

  • Supports a child’s social and emotional needs
  • Encourages early literacy
  • Builds close connections with families
  • Ensures ongoing teacher training

What is Quality Counts SCC

smiling boy

Quality Counts SCC provides a national framework for building strong early care and education systems within each state. In Santa Cruz County, 65 early care and education sites are already participating—from small, family child care homes, to large California State Preschools and Head Start programs.

Quality Counts SCC provides the training and coaching early educators need to expand their skills, improve classroom environments and build strong relationships with families. Using a 5 Tier Rating System, Quality Counts SCC helps programs measure how well they’re doing in meeting the social, emotional and cognitive needs of young children.

5 Tier Rating system

Quality Counts SCC uses a 5 Tier Rating system that is based on scientific research and best classroom practices, Quality Counts SCC makes sure every moment counts in the life of a young child.

  • Tiers 1 & 2 – Participating in Quality Efforts: Sites are licensed and in good standing, as well as meeting health and safety standards.
  • Tiers 3 & 4 – Achieving Quality Standards: Sites meet all the standards of Tiers 1 & 2, as well as meeting additional quality standards defined by the Quality Counts SCC System.
  • Tier 5 – Exceeding Quality Standards: Sites meet all the standards of Tiers 1-4, and are exceeding the quality standards defined by the Quality Counts SCC System.

Visit the First 5 Quality Counts SCC website

clapping hands

What does quality look like?

circle of kids playing
  • You feel safe & accepted for who you are
  • It’s a place to be with friends and caring adults
  • You get to do lots of fun, interesting activities
  • The program is easy to get to & affordable
  • Your family’s culture and child’s abilities are respected
  • Your child is happy and learning new things
  • The program is thriving & committed to quality
  • The work environment is safe and well organized
  • You get a chance to earn better pay and benefits

Learn more about the Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) 5 Tiers.