Environment Rating Scale (ERS) Information:

The ERS scales are used throughout the United States (and internationally!) to monitor programs, evaluate programs and recognize those with higher quality. The scores are also used to inform consumers/parents and to guide QRIS Coaches and program administrators towards creating higher quality programs for the children they serve. Because of the well-defined levels of quality represented in the ERS, they are viewed as a “roadmap” to quality improvement.

Nevada Silver State Stars QRIS utilizes the following scales for classroom assessments:


  • Early Childhood Environment Rating Scales, Third Edition (ECERS-3) for assessment of classrooms for children ages 3-5.
  • Infant Toddler Environment Rating Scales, Third Edition (ITERS-3) for assessment of classrooms serving infants and toddlers.
  • Family Child Care Environment Rating Scale, 3rd Edition (FCCERS-3) for assessing mixed ages in family child care (FCC) settings.


Training Available!

  • ERS Training for Center Administrators and FCC Owner / Operators is provided for free to all QRIS participating programs. For more information on scheduled ERS training, email qris@doe.nv.gov.


  • The QRIS staff are happy to provide “in-house”, Nevada Registry approved, 2 hour training for teaching staff. The training includes information on the QRIS process, procedures, and the ERS scales with an emphasis on preparing teachers and staff for the observation. To schedule this training, please email qris@doe.nv.gov. You can also schedule training directly with QRIS staff by checking your local contacts: http://www.nvsilverstatestars.org/contact


  • For more information on the Environment Rating Scales and other ERS publications, please visit the ERS Institute website: http://www.ersi.info/


ERS scores are a part of the QRIS star rating formula:

For child care centers, an overall ERS score for the programs will be determined based on the average scores from 50% of classrooms:

Star Level 1 or 2

Center has scored less than 3.50 average on the ERS or has a single classroom under 3.00.

Star Level 3

Center has a minimum average ERS score of 3.50-3.99, with no classroom under 3.00.

Star Level 4

Center has a minimum average ERS score of 4.00-4.49, with no classroom under 3.5.

Star Level 5

Center has a minimum average ERS sore of 4.50+, with no classroom score under 4.00.


An overall ERS score for each LEA (school district) will be determined based on the scores averaged from all state funded Pre-K classrooms at an individual school.

For LEA (District) Model scores, please reference the LEA Model: LEA Model

An overall ERS score for each Family Child Care center will be based on full program assessment.  

For Family Child Care scores, please reference the FCC Model:  FCC Model


Environment Rating Scale Assessment Protocol:

ERS Site Visit Protocol for Child Care Centers and Family Child Care:

Updated ERS Assessment Protocol with COVID-19 considerations.

ERS Site Visit Protocol for LEA (School District) Sites:

Updated ERS Assessment Protocol for LEA Pre-K Sites


Recommended Resources:  

ERS Supplemental Information

Resource guide for the ERS (ITERS R, ECERS R, ECERS 3) Scale books. Explains why each item is important, what is needed to meet the requirements for all items, and how to score. Over 800 color photographs

Centers participating in the coaching program will receive both scales and both books. Additional ERS scale books, in both English and Spanish, can be purchased at:

Kaplan Early Learning Company: http://www.ersi.info/

Teachers College Press: https://www.tcpress.com/search?search_term=ERS

Additional Notes for Clarification are developed by the authors of the ERS scale books and provide additional detail about indicators and/or items or further define terminology used the scale. Notes are added based on questions from the field and new understanding about child development and classroom practices. Additional Notes for Clarification can also be found at www.ersi.info.

Additional Notes ECERS -3

Additional Notes ITERS -3

Additional Notes FCCERS -3

Caring for Our Children, National Health and Safety Performance Standards

Guidelines for Early Care and Education Programs

Caring for Our Children, (CFOC) is a collection of national standards that represent the best practices, based on evidence, expertise, and experience, for quality health and safety policies and practices for today's early care and education settings.

The 4th edition of Caring for our Children can be downloaded for free here:


Or purchased in paperback from the American Academy of Pediatrics: