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The NIEER blog reporting on research, policy, and practice

Preschool Matters Today

Quality Standards: Gains and Losses in Tough Times


June 22, 2011

DIGGING DEEPER: WHAT THE YEARBOOK HAS TO SAY ABOUT QUALITY STANDARDS (PART 2 OF 3-PART SERIES) In our annual report of state-funded preschool programs, we examine three key features of each state pre-K initiative: access, quality standards, and resources. Here we provide a big picture look at the one of these features, quality standards, in…

Preschool Access: With Tough Budget Choices Ahead, Will Enrollment Stagnate?


June 17, 2011 Access

DIGGING DEEPER: WHAT THE YEARBOOK HAS TO SAY ABOUT ENROLLMENT (PART 1 OF 3-PART SERIES) In our annual report of state-funded preschool programs, we examine three key features of each state pre-K initiative: access, quality standards, and resources. Here we provide a big picture look at the first of these three features, access, in an…

The Bottom Ten: A Closer Look at No-Program States


June 6, 2011 Quality and Curriculum

The State of Preschool 2010 provided some good news regarding two new pilot programs in Alaska and Rhode Island, meaning there is no longer a “dirty dozen” of states without preschool education programs. However, 10 states still have not made preschool a priority and lack such programs for young learners. These “Bottom Ten” states do provide some services to their…

Winning the Future: Early Learning, Race to the Top, and Federal Funding


May 25, 2011

After more than a month of tweaking and planning, today Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius announced the details of the Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge (RttT-ELC). Both departments will co-administer the $500 million state-level grant competition, which has the goal of rewarding states that develop comprehensive plans for early learning system with coordination, clear learning standards,…

This Memorial Day: A Time to Reflect on the Past … and the Future of Armed Forces


May 20, 2011 Outcomes

How Early Education Can Support Our Military As Memorial Day approaches and Americans collectively prepare for the start of summer it is easy to lose track of the purpose of this day — to honor and remember those Americans in uniform who have died in the service of their country. Unfortunately, recent reports indicate that…

Are Hispanic Children Losing Out in Preschool?


May 16, 2011 English Language LearnersOutcomes

As revealed in The State of Preschool 2010 , enrollment in state-funded pre-K programs nationwide has been negatively impacted by these bad budget years . Enrollment of 4-year-olds nationwide grew by only 3.9 percent, and 3-year-old enrolled actually declined by about 4 percent from 2008-2009 to 2009-2010. Both per-child and overall funding were down as well. These changes appear to be affecting young…

Signs of Decline: Pre-K Trends During the “Great Recession”


May 9, 2011

Since releasing The State of Preschool 2010: State Preschool Yearbook in April, we’ve been thinking a lot about the impact of the recession on our youngest learners. The 2009-2010 school year was the second year in a row that we saw the negative impacts of the recession, which became more severe and widespread. Total state funding for pre-K fell for the first time…

This Week: Thank a Teacher


May 4, 2011 Workforce

From elementary school students to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan , people across the nation are taking time to thank a teacher throughout the week. That’s because this week is Teacher Appreciation Week , a time to not only celebrate our educators but also to learn more about teaching as a profession. Years of research have found that teachers play an extremely important…

In the News: The State of Preschool


April 29, 2011

The results of NIEER’s annual survey of state-funded preschool, The State of Preschool 2010: State Preschool Yearbook, were released this week in Washington, DC. At the release, NIEER Co-Director Steve Barnett noted that the data showed that, nationally speaking, the recession is continuing to negatively impact state-funded pre-K programs. “Overall, state cuts to preschool funding…

Latest Yearbook Findings: A Wake-Up Call?


April 26, 2011

When NIEER’s research team analyzed the 2009–2010 data for this year’s State Preschool Yearbook , it was not without some trepidation. News coming from the states has been anything but encouraging and we knew the previous year’s data had not captured the full impact of the recession. In many respects, the 2009-2010 data does present a fuller appreciation…