Study reveals power of staff, family engagement at early learning centers

Knowledge Universe/Gallup research reveals greater engagement leads to fewer problems


WLC Presentation

Linda Hassan Anderson, Elanna Yalow, and Wei-Li Chong talk about KU’s employee and family engagement at the NAEYC Conference in Dallas, Texas.

Knowledge Universe revealed new survey data today showing increased engagement among employees and families leads to a host of positive education outcomes, including greater enrollment and higher likelihood of national accreditation.

Released at the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s annual conference, the research by Gallup for KU brands showed KU nearly doubling employee engagement over two years. For more than a decade, hundreds of U.S. companies across all industries have reported about 30 percent of their employees being engaged at work, according to Gallup. Over the last two years, KU has increased its percentage of engaged employees from 30 to 50 percent since 2012. According to Gallup, KU’s engagement increase is twice as fast as other companies its size.

“The numbers don’t lie – engagement matters whether we are looking at a small town classroom or global customer base. We are thrilled with the data we are seeing, but we are most excited about how that data comes to life where it matters,” said Wei-Li Chong,  executive vice president of people and family experience. “As I travel to our centers across the country, my KU colleagues are telling me that there is a difference in how their centers feel. More engaged employees lead to better environments and better experiences for them and their families. They are noticing big and positive changes. We’re all working together to create the best environments in every community we serve.”

The link from employee engagement to family engagement is important to KU. More than 100,000 families participated in Knowledge Universe’s most recent family engagement survey. “When employee and family engagement is high at a center, we’ve learned it leads to great things, such as national accreditation through NAEYC, higher enrollment, and low teacher turnover. We believe this fosters optimal conditions for children’s development,” Chong said.

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