ERIC Number: ED420382
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Mar-26
Reference Count: N/A
Head Start: Research Insufficient to Assess Program Impact. Testimony before the Subcommittee on Children and Families, Committee on Labor and Human Resources, U.S. Senate, and the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Youth and Families, Committee on Education and the Workforce, House of Representatives. Statement of Carlotta C. Joyner, Director, Education and Employment Issues, Health, Education, and Human Services Division.
Joyner, Carlotta C.
This statement discusses the impact of Head Start on children and their families and the adequacy of Health and Human Services' (HHS) current research plans to provide additional information on Head Start's impact. The statement describes the background of the Head Start program, summarizes the results of a 1997 review of research on Head Start's impact, outlines HHS's current initiatives to assess program impact, and suggests ways to improve their efforts. The statement indicates that although Head Start has provided comprehensive services to millions of low-income children and their families, little is known about whether the program has achieved its goals. The body of available research is insufficient for use in drawing conclusions about the impact of the national program. HHS has three impact assessment initiatives: (1) development of performance measures focusing on program outcomes; (2) a national longitudinal study of a representative sample of Head Start children and their families (Family and Child Experiences Survey); and (3) a collaborative effort with the National Center for Educational Statistics. The statement maintains that it is unclear whether these efforts will meaningfully compare the outcomes achieved by Head Start children and their families with those achieved by non-Head Start children and families. The use of randomized trials applied to Head Start is discussed. (Author/KB)
Descriptors: Compensatory Education, Early Intervention, Family (Sociological Unit), Hearings, Outcomes of Education, Preschool Children, Preschool Education, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, Research Needs
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Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: General Accounting Office, Washington, DC. Health, Education, and Human Services Div.