Quality Start Los Angeles (QSLA)

What is Quality Start Los Angeles?

  • Quality Start Los Angeles (QSLA) is a voluntary quality rating and improvement system (QRIS) designed to help parents of children birth to five choose the best early childhood education for their family by helping parents understand what makes an early learning program effective.
  • Quality Start Los Angeles is LA County’s QRIS and is part of a larger state and national movement that offers early learning professionals the acknowledgment and the support they need to continuously strive towards high quality programs for the children, families, and communities they serve. This standards-based accountability effort is the inspiration and model for QSLA and has been adopted by nearly 40 states across the country. In California, all 58 counties currently participate in some form of a QRIS.
  • QSLA is helping to maximize the success of children and their families at participating early learning sites across Los Angeles County by supporting the professionals from licensed centers and family child care homes in the continuous improvement of their programs. Providers who participate in QSLA receive access to training, resources, and funding to support their ongoing efforts.
  • This local initiative, funded by state and local dollars, helps participating providers achieve the highest level of quality through individualized coaching, access to professional development opportunities, and classroom supplies to enhance the classroom environment so children thrive.


In 2012, Los Angeles County began QRIS implementation as part of California’s Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) funding opportunity. The Los Angeles County Office for the Advancement of Early Care and Education (formerly LAC-OCC) and LAUP, operated this QRIS effort using the Quality Continuum Framework Rating Matrix to assess providers serving children age birth to five.

In 2014-15, the Office for the Advancement of Early Care and Education and LAUP partnered with the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE) to submit an application for the California State Preschool Program (CSPP) QRIS Block Grant to provide QRIS services to CSPP providers in the County. As a result of Block Grant funding, Quality Start Los Angeles (QSLA) was created.

In 2016, QSLA was successful in securing funding from the Infant/Toddler QRIS Block Grant to support QRIS participation of providers serving infants and toddlers.
Also in 2016, non-state funded programs serving children age birth to five received QRIS services funded by local First 5 LA dollars.