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The NIEER blog reporting on research, policy, and practice

Preschool Matters Today

The Perry Preschool Study Stands the Test of Time, but It Doesn’t Stand Alone


September 17, 2010 Outcomes

Perhaps because the Perry Preschool study is cited so often to demonstrate the long-term benefits of preschool, it seems the landmark study is often criticized – or at least its flaws underscored in an attempt to discredit its findings as relevant to today’s world. This week I decided to address the validity of some of…

Shakira Steps Into Role of Early Childhood Advocate


September 9, 2010

When you hear the name Shakira, the image that comes to mind is most likely not that of an advocate for early education and care for Latin America’s kids. In NIEER’s Preschool Matters the chart-topping superstar and Colombia native discusses her passion for the cause and strategies to build a successful coalition to support it.

Three Easy Pieces (of Research) for Budget Deciders


August 27, 2010 OutcomesWorkforce

As the recession drags on, it becomes ever-more-obvious the ABC (across-the-board cuts) approach to controlling government expenditures is harming our chances for a robust economy in the future. That’s because ABC looks at everything as a cost, ignoring investments in areas like early childhood education that are critical to future economic growth. ABC has been…

Welcome to the Milk Party: The Children’s Movement of Florida


August 13, 2010 Outcomes

In this era of Tea Party discontent, a group of Floridians who have had it up to their eyeballs with the way Florida treats its children is kicking off its own series of Milk Parties to register their determination to elevate children on the state’s list of investment priorities. Officially launched earlier this week, the…

Is Preschool Too Early for Science? No!


August 6, 2010 Workforce

For Curious Young Minds Eager to Understand Their World, This Age is Just Right Related Reading Preschool Pathways to Science (PrePS) Facilitating Scientific Ways of Thinking, Talking, Doing, and Understanding Rochel Gelman Kimberly Brenneman Gay Macdonald Moisés Román Paul H. Brooks Publishing Co., Inc. Baltimore, MD 144 pages, ISBN 978-1-59857-044-1 $29.95 Until recently, science has…

A Curious Proposal to Privatize New Jersey’s Already Privatized Pre-K


July 30, 2010

The recent New Jersey Privatization Task Force recommendations on pre-K disregard the facts and oppose the best interests of New Jersey’s children. The report highlights pre-K as an example of “successful” privatization, but then calls for the state to replace this successful private-public educational partnership with low-quality child care. This plan is taken straight from…

How the Arts Help Kids Develop


July 26, 2010

When renowned abstract expressionist Robert Goodnough created his paintings, he probably didn’t have an audience of 3-year-olds in mind — and when New Jersey built its performing arts center (NJPAC) in Newark, playing to preschoolers probably wasn’t high on the list of justifications. These days, however, both are regularly pressed into service to help young…

Why Curriculum Decision Makers Should Look at All the Evidence


July 15, 2010

Developing guidance on what works in early education is always challenging and that certainly applies to the difficult business of evaluating and selecting a curriculum. Whenever specific early education curricula are evaluated, judgment calls have to be made on the strengths and weaknesses of the evaluation including such issues as the duration and quality of…

A Glimpse into France’s Ecole Maternelle


July 7, 2010

The overwhelming majority of early childhood education in France takes place in public preschools such as the well-known ecole maternelle. These programs must meet national standards and are sufficiently subsidized by the government to enable children from middle class families to attend at little or no cost. Not surprisingly, enrollment of French children in the…

By the Book: Approaches to Curriculum in State Pre-K Programs


June 28, 2010

There is no simple answer to the question of what, and how, preschoolers should be taught. The 51 state-funded preschool programs profiled in The State of Preschool 2009 Yearbook present a wide range of program interests and state priorities, and this continues to be true in the realm of curriculum. Thirty-three prekindergarten programs in 26…