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Preschool Matters Today

(Almost) Everything You Wanted to Know about Pre-K in the Federal Budget


April 12, 2013 Access

Since President Obama announced his goal of quality early education for 4-year-olds in his State of the Union address , the education world has been buzzing for more information. Details provided earlier this month indicated that the president’s plan would call for funding the program through an  increase in the tobacco tax from $1.01 per pack to $1.95. The release of the president’s budget proposal for fiscal year…

Yes, Public Preschool is a Smart Investment


March 22, 2013 AccessOutcomes

Note: This blog post is in response to the question posed by The New York Times in its Room for Debate forum:  “Is Public Preschool a Smart Investment?” . Early education and care programs have two goals — child care so parents can work or go to school and education so children learn and grow optimally.  Unfortunately, much of what is called child…

Fulfilling the Promise of Universal Pre-K


March 7, 2013 Access

Few government investments pay the dividends of high-quality pre-kindergarten education, which has been found to return as much as $10 for every dollar invested, from higher earnings, lower crime, and reduced government costs later in life. Yet, despite powerful evidence that it works, states have a checkered history of implementing quality pre-K. New York Governor…

Federal Proposal Would Build on State Efforts


February 26, 2013 AccessOutcomesQuality and Curriculum

President Obama’s call to action on early education is a watershed moment that has the potential to improve education for millions of American students. Ensuring all students have the opportunity to attend high-quality preschool, regardless of income and geography, is a key component of an effective education system that prepares students for success in school…

Early Education in the State of the Union Spotlight


February 12, 2013 AccessOutcomes

Rumors have been swirling that President Obama would address early childhood education in State of the Union speech, but there was still a thrill for early education advocates in hearing the President’s words rings out from the podium tonight. The full details of his early education plan will be revealed in coming days but inclusion…

Principles for New Federal Early Education Policy Initiatives


February 8, 2013 Access

Anticipation is building that President Obama will propose a significant new investment in early education in his State of the Union address. There are many big issues to be addressed, and young children always seem to be considered a small issue so it would make a real statement if the President chose to mention them.  There are…

Not Just Wishful Thinking


January 10, 2013 AccessOutcomes

Ensuring that all our children are ready to succeed when they enter kindergarten is a tremendous task, made much more difficult in the United States by high levels of poverty and low levels of parental education. One in four preschoolers lives in poverty, nearly half in low-income families. Twenty-seven percent are born to mothers without…

Preschool for Y’All: The Rise of Early Education in the South


November 1, 2012 Access

(PART 1 OF 2-PART SERIES) As our State of Preschool 2011 report made clear, state-funded pre-K nationwide has fallen victim to tight budgets. As rises in enrollment outstripped funding increases, per-child spending was dragged down. We’ve also seen that disparities in quality, access, and resources have been exacerbated over the last decade, as some states prioritized early education during budget…

These Hours Were Made For Learning: State Pre-K Operating Schedules


September 21, 2012 Access

Last week we wrote about changes in schedules for kindergarten classes , noting that some states and school districts are scaling back from full-day to half-day programs to stretch tight budgets further. This week we’re taking a look at pre-K programs and their operating schedules, using longitudinal data from our State Preschool Yearbook  report series. Like their counterparts in kindergarten, preschoolers may be in full- or half-day…

Back to School: Shrinking Kindergarten Days


September 11, 2012 Access

It’s that time of year again when the weather starts to feel crisper and the kids are donning backpacks to head to a new year of school. But what kind of classrooms are they going back to this year? Unfortunately, with budgets stretched thinner and thinner, many schools are forced to make significant cuts. In…