Un Buen Comienzo (UBC), “A Good Start,” is a collaborative project in Santiago, Chile, to improve early childhood education through teacher professional development. The idea is to improve the quality of educational offerings for four-to-six-year-olds, particularly in the area of language development. This project is also designed to intervene in critical health areas that improve school attendance as well as socioemotional development, and it seeks to involve the children's families in their education.

UBC, which has received some funding from the Center on the Developing Child, is an example of the kind of integrated child development work that is central to the Center’s mission.

The project, which began in 2007 with four demonstration sites, will eventually encompass 60 schools. National and international actors from both the public and private sectors are participating in the effort, which involves two years of intervention for each site.

UBC also incorporates a comprehensive evaluation: a cluster-randomized experiment in all 60 schools. This type of longitudinal evaluation in early education has not been carried out in any other country in Latin America and will place Chile at the forefront of demonstrating the impact of a high-quality early education. 

Diana Leyva, Ph.D., a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center, is the Project Director for UBC. MaryCatherine Arbour, M.D., M.P.H., a senior research associate at the Center, directs the health component of UBC, and Center-affiliated faculty Catherine Snow, Ph.D., the Patricia Albjerg Graham Professor at HGSE, is also involved in the project.

Videos en Español

Three videos from the Center's InBrief series are also available in Spanish. The translations of these videos were made possible with major support from the World Bank.


Major support for Un Buen Comienzo has been provided by:

Andrónico Luksic

Harvard University