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ERIC Number: ED480538
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Nov
Pages: 32
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Economics of Education: Public Benefits of High-Quality Preschool Education for Low-Income Children. Building Communities for Change.
Oppenheim, Jerrold; MacGregor, Theo
Noting that high-quality preschool increases the ability of low-income children to profit from elementary and secondary education, thereby increasing their high school graduation rate and generating economic and other returns for taxpayers, this report articulates and analyzes the economic benefits of providing a high-quality preschool education to all low-income 3- and 4-year-olds in the United States, and especially in the Entergy [utilities conglomerate] states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. Data were obtained through previously published reports on the benefits of providing preschool to poor children, with additional original research to fill in information gaps. The report notes that benefits of high-quality preschool include reduction in crime; increases in high school graduation rates; increased employment, income, and tax levels; and decreases in health care, welfare, and child care expenses. The estimation of costs for high-quality, part-day, part-year programs was based on the actual average per-child costs of the Head Start program, including federal administrative and support costs. Benefits are identified for both taxpayers and program participants. The report concludes by contending that providing a high-quality preschool education to all low-income children makes good economic sense and that not doing so leaves the nation vulnerable to poorly educated, poorly motivated, low-wage-earning individuals with a greater propensity toward criminal activity. The report's two appendices include tables summarizing benefits by state and describe the extent of American and Southern poverty. (KB)
Arkansas Advocates for Children & Families, 523 S. Louisiana, Suite 700, Little Rock, AR 72201. Tel: 501-371-9678; Fax: 501-371-9681; Web site: For full text:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Policymakers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Arkansas; Louisiana; Mississippi; Texas