Universal Preschool Research
We've compiled research regarding the education of children ages three to five,
inclusive of preschool, kindergarten and early education studies and put it all in
one, easy-to-find place. In this section, Preschool Research is right at your
HHS: Head Start Students Do Worse in Math Than Non-Head Start Students
Children who were in the federal Head Start program do worse in math and have more problems with social interaction by the third grade than children who were not in the program, according to a large-scale study by the U.S. Department of HHS.
The congressionally mandated study evaluated 4,667 elementary students. The main conclusion is that overall, the $8 billion Head Start program provides no measurable benefit for children by the time they reach the third grade compared to the sampling of children in similar economic circumstances who were not in the program, referred to as the "control group" in the study. "In summary, there were initial positive impacts from having access to Head Start, but by the end of 3rd grade there were very few impacts found for either cohort in any of the four domains of cognitive, social-emotional, health and parenting practices," the HHS study said. "The few impacts that were found did not show a clear pattern of favorable or unfavorable impact on children."
February 27, 2013
[More Results from CNS News]
Head Start or Dead End?
The only "lasting impact" of the Head Start program is on taxpayers' wallets.
Those too-clever-for-words folks over at the Department of Health and Human Services have yet again tried to put one over on us. Using the oldest PR trick in the book, they released information to the media that they hoped no one would notice - on a Friday when people are too busy thinking about and planning their weekends. And because the report is very politically embarrassing, DHHS doubled down and went public on a Friday before a long holiday weekend. So right before Christmas, on Friday, December 21st, we were hit with the results of the third and final phase of the federal government's Head Start study. (Established by Lyndon Johnson in 1965, Head Start is the pet project of the early education crowd, which consists of spendaholic types aided, abetted and financed by the teachers unions, which love nothing more than expanding their roster of dues paying members. And President Obama is complicit member of this unholy alliance.)
January 02, 2013
[More Results from unionwatch.org]
In Texas schools, a picture's worth 1,000 calories
A $2 million project being unveiled Wednesday in the lunchroom of a Texas elementary school will use high-tech cameras to photograph what foods children pile onto their trays - and later capture what they don't finish eating.
Digital imaging analysis of the snapshots will then calculate how many calories each student scarfed down. Local health officials said the program, funded by a U.S. Department of Agriculture grant, is the first of its kind in a U.S. school, and will be so precise that the technology can identify a half-eaten pear left on a lunch tray.
May 12, 2011
[More Results from CNS News]
New L.A. study affirms benefits of preschool
Children enrolled in Los Angeles Universal Preschool programs made significant improvements in the social and emotional skills needed to do well in kindergarten, according to a study released Monday.
The study, commissioned by the organization and conducted by the San-Jose-based Applied Survey Research, measured the readiness skills of 437 children at 24 preschools in the fall of 2008 and reassessed 364 of those children in sping 2009.
April 19, 2010
[More Results from Los Angeles Times]
What Happened When Kindergarten Went Universal?
More than four decades after the first model preschool interventions, there is an emerging consensus that high-quality early-childhood education can improve a child's economic and social outcomes over the long term.
Publicly funded kindergarten is available to virtually all children in the U.S. at age five, but access to preschool opportunities for children four years old and younger remains uneven across regions and socioeconomic groups. Parents with financial means have the option of enrolling their child in a private program at their own expense.
March 08, 2010
[More Results from Education Next]
Sugary Drinks Fattening Up Preschoolers
Sweet drinks at snack time and before bed are widening preschoolers' waistlines, a new study shows.
Canadian researchers found that 2- to 4-year-olds who regularly drank sugar-sweetened beverages such as soft drinks and fruit drinks between meals were more than twice as likely to be overweight at age 4 1/2, compared to kids who didn't drink these beverages.
June 25, 2009
[More Results from ABC News]
Parental Absence Stifles Kids' Learning
Young children who experience separation from a parent are at increased risk for learning problems as they enter kindergarten, new research shows.
While the emotional and behavioral impact of separation from a parent on young children is well recognized, the study is one of the first to examine the effect on learning as children begin school. Children in the study who had been separated from a parent scored significantly worse than children with intact families in testing designed to measure key early learning issues.
May 16, 2008
[More Results from WebMD]
RAND Preschool Study, Part II
RAND's report, County-Level Estimates of the Effects of a Universal Preschool Program in California, predicts local reductions in high school dropouts, grade retention, special education years and juvenile crime.
New research from economists at the RAND Corporation shows that a strategic, statewide investment in quality preschool opportunity for all would deliver major education and public safety benefits to local communities.
March 27, 2007
[More Results from Preschool California]
Hi-tech toys offer no educational gain, say researchers
Parents who invest in toy computers and other electronic games marketed as boosting learning for babies and pre-schoolers could save their money and help their children to learn themselves, according to new research.
A government-funded study examining the role of technology in the lives of three- and four-year-old children and their families found that the hi=tech devices - one of the fastest growing sectors of the toy market, aimed at infants as young as nine months - are no more effective than traditional ways of introducing basic literacy and number skills.
November 14, 2006
[More Results from Guardian Unlimited (UK)]
Children’s Social, Emotional & Behavioral Health Plan
Initiated by Senate Enrolled Act (SEA) 529 during the 2005 legislative session, it is the product of eleven months of work. The legislation specified what the plan should address, and who should participate in its development.
The plan covers many topics including assessment, accountability and outcome measurement, finance and budget, best practices, referral networks, school standards, workforce development, and training. Considerable information and insight were gathered through three public forums conducted in the north, central and southern regions of the state.
August 29, 2006
[More Results from DOE State of Indiana [pdf file]]
Redshirting: A "Moving" Experience
The question about whether a child should begin kindergarten when he or she reaches the prescribed age for school entry has "readiness" written all over it.
And as we all know, "readiness" is not something that can be easily measured. What variables need to be considered when we think about readiness for? Ask any child who has had to repeat a grade how they feel about having been "left back" and you'll quickly realize how serious a decision this is for parents and educators to make. An early study asked young students to rate a series of stressful events, and being left back ranked third, immediately following "going blind" and "losing a parent." Point made!
August 18, 2006
[More Results from National Center for Learning Disabilities]
Let's Walk before We Run: Cautionary Advice on Childcare
Ottawa and the provinces should use their spending powers to ensure access to reasonable quality childcare programs for "at risk" children, rather than launch universal childcare, says a Commentary released today by the C.D. Howe Institute.
Childcare programs targeted on disadvantaged families could generate significant benefits, says the paper, Let's Walk before We Run: Cautionary Advice on Childcare, by John Richards, Professor, Public Policy Program, at Simon Fraser University and Matthew Brzozowski, Assistant Professor, Economics, at the University of Western Ontario. While studies show childcare programs benefit children from low-income or single-parent families, who are likely to be disadvantaged in terms of preparation for formal schooling, the net benefits for children from stable, middle-class homes are doubtful, according to the study. Why do "at risk" children clearly benefit? Evidence from US studies suggests that benefits are a function of the gap between the quality of the childcare centre and the home as a learning environment.
August 11, 2006
[More Results from C.D. Howe Institute [pdf]]
Is Universal Preschool Beneficial? An Assessment of RAND Corporation's Analysis and Proposals for California
Almost two-thirds of California families currently choose to send their 4-year-olds to preschool.Of those who do, almost half choose a preschool program operated by the state of California, while the other half choose a privately operated preschool.
If Proposition 82, an initiative on the
June ballot, is implemented those figures will radically change. Most family- and other privately owned
preschools will vanish, replaced by government-run, taxpayer-funded preschools. This report assesses RAND Corporation's cost benefit analysis and finds that it significantly
overestimates the upsides and drastically underestimates the downsides of universal preschool and
the California proposal. Using RAND's own data and alternative assumptions based on the studies they reference, it is easy to demonstrate that universal preschool generates losses of 25 to 30 cents for every dollar spent.
May 30, 2006
[More Results from Reason Foundation [pdf]]
The Case Against Universal Preschool in California
The Institute for American's Future and the Center for American Progress are calling for $325 billion of added federal education spending over the next decade to create a nationwide, universal preschool program.
Although the coalition has not released a specific plan, typical universal preschool proposals call for replacing the private parentdriven
preschool system with a taxpayer-funded system that would likely add one or two years of "voluntary" preschool for all children onto the current K-12 public education system.
Nationwide, at least 40 states provide funding for preschool programs, and at least 28 considered legislation to expand state-funded preschool programs in 2005.
April 17, 2006
[More Results from Reason (CA)]
New report examines effects nationwide of preschool on kids' development
While middle-class children benefit modestly from preschool, youngsters from poor families experience two times the gains in early language and mathematics learning, according to a new study of more than 14,000 kindergartners nationwide.
The report - "The Influence of Preschool Centers on Children's Development Nationwide: How Much Is Too Much'" - also examined whether long hours in preschool centers lead to diminishing returns in children's early development. Most surprising, is that the social skills of white, middle-class children suffer- in terms of cooperation, sharing and engagement in classroom tasks - after attending preschool centers for more than six hours a day, compared to similar children who remain at home with a parent prior to starting school.
November 01, 2005
[More Results from UC Berkeley News]
Official: babies do best with mother
One of the most detailed studies of UK childcare has concluded that young children who are looked after by their mothers do significantly better in developmental tests than those cared for in nurseries, by childminders or relatives.
The study on children from birth to three will reignite the controversy over the best way to bring up young children. It found babies and toddlers fared worst when they were given group nursery care. Those cared for by friends or grandparents or other relatives did a little better while those looked after by nannies or childminders were rated second only to those cared for by mothers.
October 02, 2005
[More Results from Guardian Unlimited (UK)]
Study: Preschool Kids Drive Flu Epidemics
When the flu strikes, preschool kids may be the first age group affected, passing the flu on to other people, a new study shows.
If so, vaccinating 3- and 4-year-olds against flu might help curb flu epidemics, write researchers in the American Journal of Epidemiology.
October 01, 2005
[More Results from FOX News]
Research Finds a High Rate of Expulsions in Preschool
So what if typical 3-year-olds are just out of diapers, still take a daily nap and can't tie their shoes? They are old enough to be expelled, the first national study of expulsion rates in pre-k programs has found.
In fact, preschool children are three times as likely to be expelled as children in kindergarten through 12th grade, according to the new study, by researchers from the Yale Child Study Center. Although preschool expulsion rates varied widely by state and type of setting, the study found that on average, boys were expelled at 4.5 times the rate of girls, African-Americans at twice the rate of Latinos and Caucasians, and 4-year-olds at 1.5 times the rate of 3-year-olds.
May 17, 2005
[More Results from The New York Times]
Stick to what works, researchers tell preschool advocates and policy makers
As efforts accelerate to develop a universal preschool system, advocates and policy makers should focus dollars on blue-collar families, not hand preschools over to public schools.
"The worthy cause of extending preschool to all families is gaining steam, money and big-name proponents," said Bruce Fuller, co-author of the report and UC Berkeley professor of education and public policy. "But key pillars of initial programs are founded on the sands of weak evidence, ignoring the lessons from leading states."
May 05, 2005
[More Results from UC Berkeley News]
The Costs and Benefits of Universal Preschool in California
Research has shown that well-designed preschool education programs serving disadvantaged children can generate benefits to government and the rest of society that outweigh program costs.
As a result of such evidence, there has been a growing conviction among U.S. business leaders, policymakers, and the public that children benefit from structured programs preparing them for school entry. That conviction has been accompanied by increasing enthusiasm for public-sector investment in preschool.
March 31, 2005
[More Results from Rand Corporation]
Are Santa Clara County Kindergarteners Prepared to Learn?
Released today at a community forum of business, civic and education leaders, Ready for School? A Report on the Skill Levels of Santa Clara County Kindergarteners, assesses readiness in five developmental areas.
According to a new study from the Santa Clara County Partnership for School Readiness, nearly 75 percent of preschoolers meet teacher expectations for overall kindergarten readiness, while 10 percent fall significantly below expectations. Additionally, less than 41% of children entering kindergarteners are proficient, or even in progress toward proficiency, in language and communication skills.
March 08, 2005
[More Results from United Way Silicon Valley]
Parents go to school on giving kids a good start
Police take up the cry to get all 4-year-olds into preschool.
The situation in San Leandro is not unique. A statewide survey of publicly funded preschool programs found anywhere from 20,000 to 50,000 children waiting for slots in either Head Start, state preschool programs or general child care - all of which serve low-income families.
Sponsored by Fight Crime: Invest in Kids California, the survey included responses from about 2,800 state programs, a 48 percent response rate.
February 10, 2005
[More Results from The Daily Review (CA)]
Do Pre-K Center Care Programs Work?
A number of states have initiated, or are in the process of initiating, free pre-K center care programs for children from low-income families.
In the case of Smart Start and Kid Stuff, the states estimate that when fully implemented, these programs will cost in excess of $300 million per year.
During the past 40 years there have been five large-scale trials conducted to investigate the relationship between pre-K and developmental outcomes in children. We will examine each of these studies to see if they support the claim that high quality pre-K contributes to the intellectual, academic, and behavioral development of children.
August 01, 2003
[More Results from Eagle Forum]