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Getting Ready for Kindergarten: Children's Progress During Head Start - Here is a look at children's outcomes at the end of Head Start and changes in children's skills and development between Head Start entry and exit. Authors describe findings for the population as a whole and differences in findings between children who entered at age 3 or 4. (Nikki Aikens, et al., Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, June 2013)...

The Early Education Pilot for Two Year Old Children: Age Five Followup - This is a study from the United Kingdom concluding that for children who attended preschool when they were two, there is no evidence that they had overall better outcomes at five. The exception is children whose preschools were high-quality settings. There is also no evidence that attending preschool at two increased the likelihood of those children attending preschool at three or four, except for children from black and ethnic minority backgrounds who were more likely to attend preschool if they attended preschool at age two. (Ruth Maisey, Svetlana Speight and Vicky Marsh, (UK) Department of Education, March 2013)...

Building the Brain’s “Air Traffic Control” System: How Early Experiences Shape the Development of Executive Function - This brief reviews the research literature about the relationship between brain development and self-regulation skills and shows that such skills are foundational to school readiness and social competence. Researchers further illustrate how early experiences – whether at home or in a formal education program – can significantly shape these skills. The brief urges early education programs to more intentionally focus on self-regulation in their curriculum, professional development and assessment. (Center on the Developing Child, Harvard University, 2011)...

Strengthening Pennsylvania Businesses through Investments in Early Care and Education - In this analysis, every dollar invested in Pennsylvania’s early childhood industry produces an additional $1.06 in economic activity. This “multiplier effect” results from goods and services purchased by schools and businesses that operate early education programs and by the employees hired by these programs. Furthermore, the brief found that the immediate additional economic impact generated by the early childhood industry is higher than other sectors, such as transportation, construction, trade, manufacturing and utilities. (America's Edge, 2011)...

Initial Results of the Evaluation of the Tennessee Voluntary Pre-K Program - Using two different research methods to examine the effects of Tennessee’s Voluntary Pre-kindergarten Program, this study by Vanderbilt University demonstrates the positive impact of high-quality pre-k on children’s school readiness skills. (Vanderbilt University, April 2011)...

Relationship Between Young Children's Nursery Rhyme Experiences and Knowledge and Phonological and Print-Related Abilities - The authors examined the relationships between nursery rhyme experiences, knowledge and awareness and both phonological- and print-related skills in 12 studies of 5,299 preschoolers. The research synthesis examines nursery rhyme experience and knowledge as determinants of later literacy abilities. (Center for Early Literacy Learning, February 2011)...

A Gradient of Childhood Self-Control Predicts Health, Wealth, and Public Safety - This article discusses findings from studies that track children from birth to adolescence or adulthood, showing that self-regulation skills measured as early as three or four years of age were associated with lower incidence of criminal behavior and better health and economic outcomes during adulthood. Importantly, children who improved in self-regulation attained better outcomes as adults than those who did not, suggesting that interventions that can improve this area of development – from early childhood through adolescence – could benefit children and society. alike. (National Academy of Sciences Meeting Proceeding, December 2010)...

Investing in America’s Economy: A Budget Blueprint for Economic Recovery and Fiscal Responsibility - This proposal put forth by Demos, Economic Policy Institute and the Century Foundation discusses both spending and revenue reforms to achieve fiscal security. Citing the strong evidence of long-term economic benefits, the report features high-quality early education among its top six investment priorities.(Demos, EPI and the Century Foundation, November 2010)...

Long-term Effects of the North Carolina More at Four Pre-kindergarten Program: Children’s Reading and Math Skills at Third Grades - In this report by The Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, researchers found that low-income third graders in North Carolina’s pre-k program, More at Four, had higher reading and math scores than those not enrolled. While a similar difference was not found among higher-income children, participation in the program is reported to narrow the test-score gap between low- and high-income third graders by 24 percent to 37 percent. (Ellen S. Peisner-Feinberg and Jennifer M. Schaaf, University of North Carolina, October 2010)...

Ready, Set, Go! Why Business Should Support Early Childhood Education - This report makes the business case for early education by providing an overview of the short- and long-term impacts of high-quality early learning, including the financial return on public investments, and describing current challenges in funding, access and quality. The report also details business leadership activities in several states -- Virginia, North Carolina, Minnesota, California and Washington -- aimed at advancing early childhood programs and outlines specific actions businesspeople and organizations can take to get involved. (U.S. Chamber of Commerce, September 2010)...

The Economic Value of the U.S. Early Childhood Sector - This study concludes that the level of investment in early childhood education is not adequate to meet the needs of our nation’s youngest children, who comprise over 8 percent of the population and will grow to be our future workforce. (Elaine Weiss and Robert Brandon, Early Childhood Sector, July 2010)...

Early Learning Left Out: Building an Early Learning Childhood System to Secure America’s Future - This report calls attention to the “investment gap” and the need to invest more in early childhood programs. The report provides data on each state’s public spending among different age groups and other characteristics about its young children and their families. (Charles Bruner, Voices for America's Children, 2010)...

Choosing the Nation’s Fiscal Future - This study from the National Research Council and the National Academy of Public Administration lays out a number of federal budget policy options that would improve our nation’s fiscal future. The authors identified early education as a potential area for increased investment because of its ability to “yield economic growth and produce social benefits.” (National Research Council and National Academy of Public Administration, 2010)...

Do Effects of Early Child Care Extend to Age 15 Years? - Findings from the longitudinal National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study (NICHD) show that high-quality early care and education (ECE) programs are associated with higher academic outcomes and fewer behavioral or emotional problems at age 15. However, the study also showed that children who spent more time in non-relative care before age five were more likely to engage in impulsive or risky behaviors as adolescents. (National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study (NICHD) Early Child Care Research Network, May 2010)...

School Effects on Preschoolers’ Self-Regulation, Early Literacy, and Language Growth - In this small study of four-year-olds in a suburban school district, researchers showed that while pre-k participation improved decoding and letter recognition skills, it did not contribute to greater capacity for self-regulation. While children did improve in this area, researchers attributed the positive change to natural maturation and suggested that "self-regulation is a learned, but neglected, skill in the preschool years." (Early Childhood Research Quarterly, May 2010)...

The Costs of Disinvestment: Why States Can’t Afford to Cut Smart Early Childhood Programs - This brief details the costs of disinvesting in a variety of early childhood programs that are proven to reduce the need for more costly interventions in the short and long terms, create jobs and stimulate the economy, including home visiting, pre-k and child care. (Partnership for America's Economic Success, April 2010)...

Effective Early Childhood Education Programs: A Systematic Review - A recent paper reviews and summarizes evaluations of 28 pre-k curricula, and uses the findings to rate the curricula's relative impact on learning from "strong evidence of effectiveness" to "limited evidence of effectiveness." All of the evaluations reviewed focused on cognitive outcomes, such as literacy and math skills, and most examined impacts through the end of the pre-k or kindergarten year, with a few tracking children's longer-term progress. (Center for Data-Driven Reform in Education, Johns Hopkins University School of Education, April 2010)...

Strengthening New York Businesses Through Investments in Early Care and Education - This report from America's Edge shows that investing in early childhood education can stimulate the economy because providers buy goods and services from local businesses and hire teachers and staff who, in turn, make their own purchases. All of this economic activity supports more jobs in the community. For New York, the report shows that every dollar invested in ECE generates $1.86 of additional spending. In other words, if the state invests an additional $3.6 billion to serve all children from birth to five, it would generate $3.1 billion of net economic activity. (America's Edge 2010)...

Head Start Impact Study Final Report - In its review of the data results from the Head Start Impact Study, this report concludes that when compared to children who did not participate in the Head Start program, those who did showed a modest advantage in vocabulary but demonstrated the same level of proficiency in spelling and other literacy and cognitive skills by the end of kindergarten and first grade. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, January 2010) ...

The Economic Power of Early Care and Education - This website provides resources for “leaders in early childhood education, economic development, business, and government” who are interested in learning more about ECE research and policy, especially as they relate to economic development. The website also links to relevant organizations and state profiles that include information on recent legislative action on early education, key stakeholders in the state, and potential economic messages for advocacy efforts. (Insight Center for Community Economic Development) ...

Presentations from the March 4-5, 2009 Workshop on Strengthening Benefit-Cost Methodology for the Evaluation of Early Childhood Interventions - This website contains presentations from the country's leading experts in early education at a National Academies meeting about conducting cost-benefit analyses in early childhood interventions. They cover a range of topics including methodological challenges, putting monetary values to various costs and benefits from early childhood programs, the ability to generalize cost-benefit analyses to a wide array of early childhood programs, and policy implications. (Board on Children Youth and Families/The National Academies, 2009) ...

California Preschool Study - This series of studies from RAND Corporation examines the state of pre-k in California, covering topics such as quality, access and school readiness gaps. (RAND Corporation)...

Meeting the Workforce Needs of the Future . . . Means Meeting the Developmental Needs of Young Children Today - This brief argues that early childhood investments will help young adults enter the workforce at a higher level of preparedness. (Society for Human Resource Management) ...


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