A Snapshot of Child Care Center Quality and Child Development in Mexico for Children Under Three: Methodology and Results
From 2018 to 2020, we conducted a groundbreaking, nationwide study in Mexico to assess service quality at public child care centers for children under three. The assessment is representative at the national level of the main child care models. We gathered evidence from 245 centers, 426 classrooms, and 2,115 children attending the centers throughout the country, as well as from their households, in order to identify specific interventions to promote child development at the centers. In addition to investigating structural quality, the study focused on process quality (or quality of interactions), measured using the CLASS-Toddler (Classroom Assessment Scoring System). The study found that the structural quality of child care centers in Mexico is high, with safe physical spaces in good condition where children have access to generally age-appropriate play materials and activities. The centers have medium-to-low levels of process quality, especially in the Engaged Support for Learning area, which offers a unique opportunity to continue improving childrens experiences at the centers and promote their development. There are also significant challenges related to targeting vulnerable populations.