For Every $1 Invested in Preschool, the Public Has a $7 Return? What?

Obama advocated for universal preschool. His stats' were for every $1 invested in early childhood provides a $7 return --Is this true?????

In the State of the Union, President Barack Obama advocated for universal preschool. His stats were every $1 invested in early childhood provides a $7 return when that child is an adult—in savings in social and justice services, higher of numbers graduate from high school, earn more income and are more committed to family. Actually, a 2004 High/Scope Perry Preschool Project reported an investment of $1 to a savings of $13.

What is missing from the discussion is what are 'quality' preschools? Quality looks like: a lower ratio of adults to children, a child-centered curriculum, and family involvement. Some people believe regulating quality programs means that external agencieswill dictate what must be done. In actuality, there are a range of strategies to deliver quality—not all preschools must look alike.

Our children deserve equal opportunities to quality—there must be some common ground here in Missouri's political arena. 

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Gavin Haque February 28, 2013 at 01:32 PM
Dear Dr. Moberly, How do you respond when people question the lasting effects of PreK? HHS' study indicates that gains made in Head Start "fade" by 3rd Grade. I'm curious to learn if your position is that of colleagues at HighScope. Thank you for your time. Gavin Haque Director of Educational Services HighScope Foundation ghaque@highscope.org
Deb Moberly March 01, 2013 at 01:41 PM
Hi Gavin I totally am aligned with High Scope's views and the long term 1970's study showing still gains in Head Start's participants. Why is it the study using 1965 participants is the one always quoted? We have used the High Scope curriculum in both the Lab school at SIU-C I directed, Preks in Ill where I supervised teachers, and more recently in a model Head Start training program in TN. But I still see the Creative Curriculum used in many Head Starts, which is too bad. I believe teachers need such a strong background in child development and teaching to make it be effective. I wish High Scope was used nationally. Deb ...


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