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Complete Web-based QRIS Management Systems and Student Information Systems for Early Childhood Education


Early Quality System’s flagship product, iPinwheel, was built to support the RTT ELC Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System at the county, regional, and state levels. The RTT ELC efforts have shaped iPinwheel since its inception in 2012 to be the most robust, integrated and comprehensive Student information and Quality Rating and Improvement Program Management and Data System on the market today. iPinwheel has exceptional structures and proven success for rating, tracking and monitoring the requirements of the RTT ELC QRIS programs.

iPinwheel is built using the latest versions of Microsoft ASP.NET, and HTML5 for use on mobile phones, tablets, and personal computers. Users can access iPinwheel from any internet-enabled device (cell phones, iPads, Android tablets, etc). iPinwheel is specifically designed for ease of use on cell phones and tablets, most often used in the ECE field by coaches, trainers, external raters, home visitors, program directors, site supervisors, teachers and parents. Funder-level administrator and other users focused heavily on data entry, analysis, and reports typically use iPinwheel on desktop browsers.

iPinwheel “holds” data in logical, easy-to-access and understand areas, built around the common QRIS program constructs of child, parent/family, classroom, site, agency, and staff. In each of these iPinwheel system areas, users can enter, edit, and monitor program data that “belong” in each area. iPinwheel is design the way programs work, making it intuitive and easy to figure out. Additionally, iPinwheel has embedded video tutorials and instruction sheets for all activities in the data system, making it very easy for users to learn about the system capacity at any time without having to convene costly data system training.

iPinwheel has the capability to store, export and import all the data elements required for QRIS Initiatives. These common data elements are accessible to users by role. The system is designed with a menu of defined user roles that allow individual stakeholders to access and manipulate data with permissions and capabilities equivalent to their programmatic or administrative responsibilities. For example, a county QRIS-level administrator would have “global” access to all data elements, user management, import/export, and reporting capabilities in iPinwheel, while a preschool teacher, family childcare owner of home visitor would only have access to a prescribed set of child, parent and classroom/group-level data and system features appropriate for his/her caseload. For each county/state, the QRIS Administrator can create users, assign roles from the role-menu, limit the access to program data to different data sets, and quickly support those users through management of passwords, log-in assistance, and technical support

iPinwheel is both a student information data system and a quality rating and improvement data system. The vision is to provide a single, integrated data system that serves a duel benefit: 1. Enables State/Head Start Early Childhood Education Providers to utilize the data system to track and report their required State/Head Start data and program requirements (Child Assessment, Eligibility, Monthly Attendance, Parent-Teacher Conferences, Meals and Snacks Report, etc.); and 2. Enables the same required data to inform and automate the QRIS site rating process. A data system that serves this dual purpose reduces the program management and reporting burden by at least 50% for both programs, thereby saving funding and valuable time. It also brings all data and activities into a shared platform that is highly visible thereby increasing accountability and assisting in state/county quality improvement efforts.


The iPinwheel Data System has robust features designed specifically for trainers, coaches and professional development managers. There are features for setting up and managing a wide variety of workshops, coaching, PLC and parent education activities. Investments in these areas are automated over to the ECE staff records and the Rating Matrix, saving QRIS Administrators hours of time tracking and calculating credit. iPinwheel enables counties/states to case load coach assignments and monitor/track the investments of each coach across QRIS initiatives. The coach role inside the data system includes a unique landing page that houses pertinent data related to each coach’s caseload assignment and constrains access to data by caseload. iPinwheel has a “Virtual Coaching” feature that enables counties/states to establish web-based coaching cycles that are rich with local video, photo and document content. Virtual coaching provides a cost effective way to engage with ECE staff across the county/state via the web-based data system and automate the credit for these investments to the ECE staff records and the Rating Matrix. The iPinwheel Data System also has a robust ECE Stipend/Incentive feature that enables counties/states to establish a wide variety of stipend/incentive programs and automate the stipend requirements, harnessing the power of the source data for staff participation in workshops, PLCs and coaching visits as well as staff education levels.


We understand that existing repositories of data are widely in use for programs supporting young children and their family. We also understand that getting data from many sources into a single data repository can improve county/state outcomes and reduce redundancy and associated costs. iPinwheel has been designed from the outset to “play well with other” data systems. iPinwheel has robust data import and export capabilities that are easy to use and both accept and output data using commonly formatted spreadsheets. These spreadsheets can then be used for analysis, data transfer to other systems, data management, and/or data import into Pinwheel. There are currently 55 data spreadsheet templates with discrete data types (Students, Staff, Parents, Referrals, Assessments, etc.) that are used to launch a county/state into the iPinwheel System using the Data Import feature with all desired legacy data. These data templates can then be used to create/revise data going forward on an ongoing basis. Sophisticated data validation is performed during the import process to take the guesswork out of data compatibility and synchronization. Managing data on an export and then importing it back into the system saves QRIS and Program staff hours of time when managing large data sets.