About

Erikson and the EDI


Success by Six working on a strategic plan informed by Kankakee County’s EDI results.

The Maasai people in East Africa greet each other by asking, “And, how are the children?” If the children are well, then it is implied that those who care for them are well and the environment that surrounds them is set up for them to thrive.

This question serves as a reminder about the high value placed on the well-being of children. When they are successful, it is a barometer that measures the conditions and health of a community. At Erikson Institute, we ask the same question of local communities through the Early Development Instrument Pilot Project.

In 2016, Erikson launched a three-year pilot project to provide the Early Development Instrument (EDI) to communities throughout Illinois. A total of five communities will implement the EDI during the pilot phase. Erikson is the second institution in the United States to hold a license under the copyright of McMaster University for implementing the EDI. This project, the first of its kind in Illinois, is an extension of Erikson’s commitment to improving the lives of young children by illuminating opportunities for community-driven policy recommendations.

Erikson works with existing community collaborative groups to ensure stakeholders across various sectors, including the public and private school systems, are engaged throughout the project. The EDI results benefit community collaboratives in their efforts to strategically and effectively respond to early childhood issues. Erikson provides community partners with resources and support to implement the EDI as well as to coordinate action based on results. Assistance includes:

  • Training, coaching, technical assistance, and resources
  • Reserving space for community partners to participate in Erikson’s Early Childhood Leadership Academy programs, which can enhance their capacity to influence early childhood policy
  • Funding for teacher stipends or substitute teachers to allow for administration of the EDI
  • Data collection and scoring
  • Capacity building around data literacy
  • Guidance on community action plan development and/or refinement based on EDI results

Read more about the members of Erikson’s EDI Team »


Year 1 Communities (EDI Completed in 2017)

Year 2 Communities (EDI Completion in 2018)

  • The Village of Oak Park

Year 3 Community (EDI Completion in 2019)

  • Central Skokie/Morton Grove neighborhoods
  • Rockford