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Policy Briefs

In Pursuit of Pre-K Parity


April 25, 2017 Economics and FinanceState & LocalWorkforce
Marcy Whitbook, Ph.D. and Caitlin McLean, Ph.D.

A Proposed Framework for Understanding and Advancing Policy and Perspective  More than half of all state-funded pre-kindergarten (pre-K) programs now require lead teachers to earn a bachelor’s degree or higher, as do many city-funded pre-K programs, yet salaries and benefits for pre-K teachers are consistently lower than the average salary for public school elementary school…

Policy Brief – Degrees in Context: Asking the Right Questions about Preparing Skilled and Effective Teachers of Young Children


April 1, 2011 Workforce

This brief aims to broaden the discussion about what it takes to develop and maintain effective instructional practices for preschool teachers.

Early Learning Scale: Technical Report


September 1, 2010 AssessmentWorkforce

This technical report from NIEER researchers on the Early Learning Scale offers information on the use and reliability of the instrument and on the validity of the data.

Policy Brief – Math and Science in Preschool: Policies and Practice


March 1, 2009 OutcomesQuality and CurriculumWorkforce

This policy brief reviews research addressing the development of mathematics and science knowledge in preschool children, identifies areas that require further study, and outlines recommendations for early education policy in these domains.

Policy Brief – Preschool Curriculum Decision-Making: Dimensions to Consider


March 1, 2007 AssessmentOutcomesQuality and CurriculumWorkforce

This report provides a framework for decision-makers to use in evaluating which curriculum might be most appropriate for their specific preschool education program.

Policy Brief – Early Literacy: Policy and Practice in the Preschool Years


April 1, 2006 AssessmentOutcomesQuality and CurriculumWorkforce

Early literacy plays a key role in enabling the kind of early learning experiences that research shows are linked with academic achievement, reduced grade retention, higher graduation rates and enhanced productivity in adult life. This policy brief synthesizes the body of professional knowledge about early literacy and offers research-based recommendations.

Policy Report – Making the Most of Kindergarten


March 1, 2005 Governance and AccountabilityOutcomesState & LocalWorkforce

This policy report examines academic and social outcomes of half-day versus full-day kindergarten and trends in provision of full-day programs. Recommendations include balancing anticipated gains from expanding kindergarten schedules against cost considerations and developing classroom and teacher support strategies when moving to full-day.

Policy Brief – Better Teachers, Better Preschools: Student Achievement Linked to Teacher Qualifications


December 1, 2004 Quality and CurriculumWorkforce

High-quality preschool education depends on effective, high-quality teachers. This brief presents educational requirements for preschool teachers, reviews evidence on the importance of teacher qualifications, and offers policy recommendations.

Policy Brief – Investing in Head Start Teachers


September 1, 2003 Economics and FinanceGovernance and AccountabilityState & LocalWorkforce

What will it cost to give Head Start the tools it needs to succeed? This brief includes information on the qualifications and compensation of Head Start teachers and discusses the issues surrounding the push towards raising both.

Policy Brief – Low Wages = Low Quality: Solving the Real Preschool Teacher Crisis


May 1, 2003 Quality and CurriculumWorkforce

This brief looks at salaries for preschool teachers and child care workers and provides evidence of the effects of poor pay and employee benefits on teacher morale, turnover rates, and ultimately on educational quality.