Wednesday, February 11, 2009
With support from major foundations and political heavy hitters like Barack Obama, universal preschool is the next big thing in education reform. Indeed, on the liberal wish list, it is second only...
With support from major foundations and political heavy hitters like Barack Obama, universal preschool is the next big thing in education reform. Indeed, on the liberal wish list, it is second only to universal health care. The goal is to offer publicly funded preschool--complete with credentialed teachers and and a standardized curriculum--to all four-year olds during the school year.
Advocates argue that public investments in early education will pay dividends over the long-term. Critics point out that the evidence from states that have universal preschool programs shows that the benefits kids receive from those programs fade out by the 4th grade.
Since preschool attendance rates in states that have universal preschool are no higher than the national average, universal preschool wouldn't even increase preschool attendance. It would, however, cost a lot of money, put lots of privately owned preschools out of business and dramatically decrease early education options for parents.
So what do you think? Is simply expanding our failing K-12 system the best way to fix it?
Hosted by Nick Gillespie, this Reason.tv documentary was written by Paul Feine and photographed by Roger M. Richards.
Posted by Blog Moderator at Wednesday, February 11, 2009