Research Report

Continued Impacts of New Mexico PreK on Children’s Readiness for Kindergarten

Results from the Third Year of Implementation

By Jason T. Hustedt, W. Steven Barnett, Kwanghee Jung, Alexandra Figueras-Daniel

September 2009

The third report in NIEER’s multi-year study of New Mexico’s prekindergarten program shows that children who attended the New Mexico PreK initiative scored higher in early math, language, and literacy than children who did not attend the program. The authors of the report found that:

  • Children who attended New Mexico PreK during the 2007-2008 school year scored higher on assessments of early math and literacy skills in comparison to children who did not attend. These skills include addition and subtraction, telling time, knowledge of letters, and familiarity with words and book concepts. Gains in early math and literacy at kindergarten entry can be attributed to participating in New Mexico PreK programs the previous year.
  • Separate sets of analyses conducted for PreK programs offered by the New Mexico Public Education Department (PED) and the Children, Youth and Families Department (CYFD) show that PED and CYFD PreK programs produce similar results.
  • When the researchers combined child assessment data from the first three years of the New Mexico PreK program, they found further evidence that New Mexico PreK produces positive impacts on children’s early math, language, and literacy skills.

The Authors

W. Steven (Steve) Barnett is a Board of Governors Professor and the founder and Senior Co-Director of the National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) at Rutgers University. Dr. Barnett’s work primarily focuses on public policies regarding early childhood education, child care, and child development.

Kwanghee Jung, an assistant research professor, brings to NIEER expertise in quantitative data analysis and is working on studies that analyze the effect of participation in state-funded preschool on children’s learning and development.

Dr. Figueras-Daniel was awarded a Young Scholars Program grant from the Foundation for Child Development to investigate coaching and professional development of Latina preschool teachers working with DLLs. At NIEER, she leads this study as well a project to develop a Latina leadership pipeline in ECE.