Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Education and Human Services


Curriculum & Instruction/Literacy Studies

Committee Chair

Joy Faini Saab.


As the call for accountability increased, President George W. Bush signed into law the No Child Left Behind Act in January 2002 to reform the Elementary and Secondary Education Act that was reauthorized in 1994. The Good Start, Grow Smart Early Childhood Education Initiative, followed in April 2002. Both of these reform measures have significant implications for school success and achievement of all children in both childcare and public school settings as well as accountability for teachers and administrators.;The purpose of this study was to investigate and analyze the views of Head Start teachers on the impact of the Good Start, Grow Smart Early Childhood Initiative on accountability for early literacy and language skills for Head Start children in a western Maryland community.;Five research questions asked in this study were related to Head Start teachers' professional experiences and background, personal characteristics, philosophical framework, strategies and methods of literacy and language practices with Head Start students and the impact of the Good Start, Grow Smart Early Childhood Initiative on Head Start teachers, administrators and students.;Data collection included the questionnaire and six one-hour long interview sessions with each Head Start teacher and administrator. Data were systematically and inductively interpreted in relation to the five research questions and with the perspectives of the administrator and teachers.;The study suggests that Head Start teachers and administrators believe that meeting the social-emotional and individual needs of Head Start students was critical in meeting the accountability requirements for language and literacy skills of the Good Start, Grow Smart Early Childhood Initiative. While the teachers generally expressed positive views about the need for the students to acquire language and literacy skill, they expressed some concerns because language and literacy were 'pushed' by the STEP training, and that might negatively impact social and emotional development of the students who are already at-risk due to their low-income background and poverty. Implications were drawn for Head Start teachers and administrators to consider possible risks of introducing young children to formal academic work prematurely. Directions for further research are suggested.