ERIC Number: ED371905
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-May
Reference Count: N/A
Early Childhood Programs: Many Poor Children and Strained Resources Challenge Head Start. Briefing Report to the Chairman, Subcommittee on Children, Family, Drugs and Alcoholism, Committee on Labor and Human Resources, U.S. Senate.
General Accounting Office, Washington, DC. Health, Education, and Human Services Div.
This report highlights the major themes and policy implications for implementing Head Start and other early childhood programs. The report is a synthesis of already issued and preliminary information from GAO reports and reviews that examined federal and state center-based programs, barriers to Head Start service delivery, and early childhood systems abroad. Major themes examined include the following: (1) preschool participation is low among poor children; (2) efforts to provide access to eligible children are being hampered by too few qualified staff, rising costs, and limited community resources; (3) among all disadvantaged children attending preschool, more than half are in programs other than Head Start; and (4) some European countries have created integrated, seamless early childhood systems that avoid some the problems experienced by programs in the United States. In exploring policy implications, the report recommends the following considerations: (1) that sufficient Head Start funds may not be going to areas of highest poverty; (2) that solving problems reported by Head Start delegates and grantees could strain the program's ability to improve quality; (3) that Linking Head Start services to those provided by other early childhood centers may be one way to increase the level of services to disadvantaged children in these centers; and (4) that if the United States is to move to a more seamless early childhood policy, policymakers must consider many issues, including who participates, what training and benefits early childhood teachers will receive, and the cost factors entailed by such change. (HTH)
Descriptors: Community Programs, Disadvantaged Youth, Educational Improvement, Educational Needs, Educational Policy, Enrollment, Government Role, Outcomes of Education, Poverty, Preschool Education, Program Implementation
U.S. General Accounting Office, P.O. Box 6015, Gaithersburg, MD 20884-6015 (first copy free; additional copies, $2 each; 100 or more copies discounted 25 percent).
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Numerical/Quantitative Data
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: General Accounting Office, Washington, DC. Health, Education, and Human Services Div.
Identifiers - Location: United States