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Recent early education news and updates

In the News

Transitional kindergarten helps prepare English learners for school, study finds


May 22, 2017
Ashley Hopkinson

English learners who attended transitional kindergarten were better prepared in math, foundational reading skills and language skills when they entered kindergarten than English learners who did not, according to a new study. English learners are defined as students who do not speak, read or write English and whose first language is not English. Statewide, English learners make up 33 percent of…

Son of Head Start founder warns against potential cut to program


May 22, 2017

Proposed funding cuts to the Department of Health and Human Services in President Donald Trump’s proposed budget endanger its work, Mark K. Shriver writes in Ed Week. Mark’s father, Sargent Shriver, developed the program during the Johnson administration. Head Start offers opportunities for young students from low-income families to have an opportunity for early childhood…

Rural children need quality preschool, too


May 22, 2017
Christina Weiland and Taryn Morrissey

Increasingly, cities are realizing that the skills tomorrow’s workers need – everything from science literacy to communication skills – get charged up early. Cities like Boston, Denver, New York, San Antonio and Seattle have made big investments in high-quality preschool since 2010. Here in Ohio, the citizens of Dayton and Cincinnati voted to increase their own…

Happy Birthday, Head Start


May 19, 2017
Sara Mead

“We have taken up the age-old challenge of poverty and we don’t intend to lose generations of our children to this enemy of the human race,” President Lyndon B. Johnson said 52 years ago Thursday when launching the Head Start program. More than half a century on, Head Start has provided early childhood development and comprehensive…

Alabama’s First Class Pre-K program to add at least 100 classrooms


May 19, 2017
Marie Leech

Alabama will add at least 100 new pre-kindergarten classrooms next school year, thanks to a $13 million expansion in state funding approved this morning by the Legislature. Both chambers agreed to an Education Trust Fund Budget compromise after a conference committee worked out differences between the Senate- and House-passed versions. The bill, which includes a total…

Trump’s first full education budget: Deep cuts to public school programs in pursuit of school choice


May 18, 2017
Emma Brown, Valerie Strauss and Danielle Douglas-Gabriel

Funding for college work-study programs would be cut in half, public-service loan forgiveness would end and hundreds of millions of dollars that public schools could use for mental health, advanced coursework and other services would vanish under a Trump administration plan to cut $10.6 billion from federal education initiatives, according to budget documents obtained by The…

Early childhood education: An investment worth making


May 18, 2017
Rep. Carol Hill-Evans

Decades of research have shown the significant ways a child’s brain develops in the early years – long before kindergarten. A child’s brain capacity is said to be 90 percent developed before the child turns 5. Those years present a valuable opportunity that we can’t afford to waste. But unfortunately, not every child in Pennsylvania…

EDITORIAL: Questions about online pre-school


May 17, 2017

Indiana has shown itself to be creative when it comes to innovative education initiatives, to the great benefit of Hoosier students, parents and taxpayers. Efforts like charter schools and the voucher program give all students the opportunity for choice and a good education that only more affluent students have had in the past. But education…

New charter schools debate: Are they widening racial divides in public education?


May 17, 2017

VACHERIE, La. — At the new public charter school in this Mississippi River town, nearly all students are African American. Parents seem unconcerned about that. They just hope their children will get a better education. “I wanted my girls to soar higher,” said Alfreda Cooper, who is black and has two daughters at Greater Grace…

Minnesota’s spending $250M a year on preschool education. Is it enough?


May 16, 2017
Christopher Magan

Every summer, Connie Garling-Squire tries to contact all the families in the South St. Paul school district who have preschool-age children. As the district’s director of early learning and equity, Garling-Squire knows some parents are unaware of the district’s preschool offerings. The sooner the district can get their children enrolled, the less likely the children are…