ERIC Number: EJ780744
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Nov
Reference Count: 5
Implementing New York's Universal Pre-Kindergarten Program: An Exploratory Study of Systemic Impacts--A Challenge to Conventional Thought: A Commentary
Goffin, Stacie G.
Early Education and Development, v18 n4 p597-600 Nov 2007
A presentation by Walter Gilliam (2007) at the First Annual Leadership Symposium on pre-kindergarten education in the United States outlined the explosion across the 50 states in enrollment and public spending for pre-kindergarten programs (including Head Start). Although the majority of these programs are in public schools, most states rely on a mixed-delivery model that uses both public school and community-based sites. This makes particularly timely Morrissey, Lekies, and Cochran's (this issue) exploration of how this new reality impacts community-based preschools and child care centers in New York that are not participating in the state's universal pre-kindergarten (UPK) program. The fact that the exploratory study builds from earlier explorations of New York's UPK adds to its merit. Morrissey and colleagues' findings affirm what many have projected: an imbalance in resources available to early care and education programs; a reduction in overall enrollment, especially of 4-year-olds; and increasing difficulty in recruiting qualified teachers. Given their alignment with expectations, these findings provoke little controversy. In this article, the author presents her views on the apparent assumptions within which these findings and Morrissey and colleagues' conclusions are embedded, namely that (a) external challenges to the existing early care and education system are likely to have negative consequences, and (b) the systemic status quo needs to be protected from disruptive influence. As expressed by Morrissey and colleagues, it is essential that new programs and policies not disrupt the already fragile system of early care and education, particularly the quality, affordable services for young children that are already in short supply.
Descriptors: Preschool Education, Program Effectiveness, Child Care Centers, Community Education, Early Childhood Education, Enrollment, Recruitment
Lawrence Erlbaum. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/default.html
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York