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Granite Steps for Quality

The NH DHHS and Bureau of Child Development and Head Start Collaboration is pleased to provide the newest Quality Recognition and Improvement System, Granite Steps for Quality (GSQ). This program supports NH’s early childhood and out of school time (OST) programs on their path to enhanced quality so that children thrive and succeed in school and beyond. The GSQ replaces the Licensed Plus Program and focuses on helping programs enhance their quality through self-study, professional development, coaching and other technical assistance.  

It is time to get recognized for all you do and become one of New Hampshire’s “recognized” quality programs as a Granite Steps for Quality awardee. To get started download and review the "Granite Steps for Quality Guide," and the GSQ application. Download the latest revised edition of  "Frequently Asked Questions" about GSQ. To learn more about using GSQ Incentive Funds, download the "Guide to Granite Steps for Quality Incentive Funds."  You can download the recent  "Granite Steps for Quality Incentive Spreadsheet." If you have a different question, please email it to

Trainings to Support Granite Steps for Quality

How to Earn a Granite Step for Quality (GSQ) in Out of School Time (OST)

This 1 hour virtual training will review the Granite Steps for Quality rubrics for OST. We will explain the staff requirements and the learning environment requirements necessary for applying for a step. Participants will also learn about the training and TA available from ACROSS NH to assist in the process.

Dates: October 24th 12-1pm or November 21st 12-1pm or January 11th 12-1pm or February 15th 12-1pm or March 14th 12-1pm or April 9th 12-1pm. Register in NHCIS

Introduction and Overview of Environment Ratings Scales (ERS) and School Age Care Environment Ratings Scales- Updated (SACERS-U)

The Environment Rating Scales (ERS) are observational tools that assess process quality of child care programs. This virtual training provides an introduction and overview of the ERS and the School Age Care Environment Rating Scale-Updated (SACERS-U) tool. We will examine the benefits of using the tool and how to use the SACERS-U tool in an out-of-school time (OST) program. This training is intended for programs with school age children in OST. This training fulfills the necessary Granite Steps for Quality (GSQ) ERS Training requirement for the SACERS Learning Environment Standard Rubric.


Dates: October 17th 12-1:30pm or November 21st 6:30-8pm or December 12th 12-1:30pm or January 16th 12-1:30pm or February 20th 6:30-8pm or March 20th 12-1:30pm or April 16th 6:30-8pm or May 29th 12-1:30pm. Register in NHCIS

Afterschool Credential Information Session

This 1 hour virtual training will list the steps and process of applying for an Afterschool Credential. We will explore the credential options, requirements, and necessary forms you need to get started.


Dates: September 13th 12-1pm or November 7th 6:30-7:30pm or February 7th 12-1pm or April 17th 12-1pm. Register in NHCIS

Using the School Age Care Environment Rating Scale (SACERS-U) for Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) in Out of School Time (OST)

This 1.5 hour virtual training will provide basic information on the School Age Care Environment Rating Scale (SACERS-U) and process quality. Participants will take away tools to implement along with the SACERS-U to support Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) in a school age program. Participants will also learn about the training and TA available from ACROSS NH to assist in CQI and program development.


Dates: September 27th 12-1:30pm or October 25th 6:30-8pm or November 15th 12-1:30pm or January 17th 6:30-8pm or April 11th 6:30-8pm. Register in NHCIS

Click on the downloadable flyer for a list of all program quality improvement trainings offered by ACROSS NH in 2023-2024. Register in NHCIS.


ACROSS NH also provides technical assistance (TA) to programs that are preparing to apply for a Granite Step for Quality (GSQ), apply for Afterschool Credentials, and look to focus on Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI). To request TA for your program, email Jamie Nadeau, ACROSS NH Director, at or click the button below.

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