Research, Publications & Policy

Straus Center for Young Children & Families

A powerful research-based approach to early childhood education policy.

The Straus Center for Young Children & Families advances research and practice that supports the development and learning of children prenatal to age eight. Through this work, the center supports the cognitive, social, and emotional growth of all children with a special focus on enhancing the prospects of the most vulnerable children affected by the challenges of poverty, trauma, and toxic stress.

The Straus Center focuses on producing and disseminating new scholarship and research-based recommendations to help practitioners and policymakers effect meaningful change in the many settings where young children learn. The center employs a strategic, multipronged approach that explores the most effective ways to strengthen the quality of early child care and education and to address key challenges in the field.

Read more about the Straus Center in a City Limits article


  • In January 2017, the Straus Center began leading a mixed methods evaluation of the Guttman Center for Early Care & Education at Bank Street College, an initiative aimed at increasing the capacity of infant and toddler caregivers in East New York. The evaluation involves collecting data on the center’s curriculum in action and overall program quality.
  • With support from TEACH Early Childhood National Center, the Straus Center is developing a webinar for state-level policy makers on the relationship between teacher compensation and qualifications and program and child outcomes. This webinar will present research-informed implications for policies and strategies that might improve the qualifications and compensation of the early childhood workforce.

Meet Our Director

About Lynn Straus

Lynn StrausThe Straus Center has been made possible with a generous gift from Lynn Straus, GSE ’57, who served for more than 25 years as a trustee of Bank Street College of Education. After graduating from Bank Street, teaching first grade, and starting a family, Lynn helped to found and then direct the preschool program that became a model for the national Head Start program and grew into one of the first New York State Experimental Pre-Kindergarten Programs. She remains a passionate advocate for and generous patron of quality early childhood education programs, especially those benefiting the youngest children and meeting the needs of children and families in under-served communities. Bank Street honored Lynn’s contributions and legacy at the 2015 Trustees’ Dinner.