Keystone STARS is Pennsylvania’s Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS). A QRIS is a continuous quality improvement systemic approach to assess, improve, and communicate the level of quality in early and school-age care and education programs. Keystone STARS is a program of Pennsylvania’s Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL).
Keystone STARS is a responsive system to improve, support, and recognize the continuous quality improvement efforts of early learning programs in Pennsylvania. Our system is guided by three core principles:
We believe inclusion, diversity, equity and respect are foundational values embedded in these principles.
Training & Professional Development
OCDEL’s Keystone STARS Program supports all early care and education programs to improve program quality. We encourage programs to think about the Keystone STARS Performance Standards as a tool to support continuous quality improvement (CQI) that impacts services to the children and families in your care.
All participating early care and education programs can receive technical assistance to support continuous quality improvement. Certified and compliant programs are welcomed to Keystone STARS by receiving STAR 1 designation. Programs such as Early Head Start and Head Start programs and Pennsylvania Department of Education Private Academic Preschools are not required to be certified by the Department of Human Services, but are eligible to participate in Keystone STARS.
The first step on a program’s continuous quality improvement (CQI) journey is connecting with a Quality Coach at the local Early Learning Resource Center (visit raiseyourstar.org and search by county or zip code). Quality Coaches are available to help identify a program’s strengths and opportunities for growth. All programs hoping to advance through STAR levels should begin with making a connection with your most supportive resource–your Quality Coach