About Bright & Early ND

Bright & Early ND is North Dakota’s Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS). A QRIS is a systematic approach to assess, improve, and communicate the level of quality in early care and education programs. Bright & Early ND was developed to help early care and education programs offer high-quality care that supports each child's learning and development.

Bright & Early ND is designed to:

  • Ensure that all children have high-quality early experiences that help them develop the skills they need to be successful in school, work, and life.
  • Support Early Childhood Professionals to provide high-quality care by offering resources such as professional development opportunities, coaching, and financial supports.
  • Help families find high-quality early care and education programs that fit their needs by providing information about program quality.

The North Dakota Department of Human Services (DHS) administers Bright & Early ND as a key strategy for quality improvement under North Dakota law (NDCC 50-11.1).

While participation in Bright & Early ND is voluntary, many of the supports and incentives for early care and education programs require active participation in Bright & Early ND.  

Learn more about North Dakota QRIS history.

Our Mission

Provide a Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) that recognizes, improves, and communicates the level of quality in early care and education programs across our state. 

Our Goals

  • To recognize early care and education programs that provide quality care,
  • To encourage early care and education programs to increase the level of quality they are providing, and
  • To provide families with information and choices about quality early care and education.

Our Vision

All of North Dakota's children have access to high-quality early learning experiences that help them develop the skills they need to be successful in school, work, and life.

Bright & Early ND Policies

The Bright & Early ND Policy Manual is designed to help programs and stakeholders understand key components of Bright & Early ND. This manual provides a detailed overview of Bright & Early ND policies and serves as a reference tool throughout participation.