ERIC Number: EJ861070
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: N/A
The Preschool Picture
Finn, Chester E., Jr.
Education Next, v9 n4 p13-19 Fall 2009
The campaign for universal preschool education in the United States has gained great momentum. Precisely as strategists intended, many Americans have come to believe that pre-kindergarten is a good and necessary thing for government to provide, even that not providing it will cruelly deprive the youngest residents of their birthrights, blight their educational futures, and dim their life prospects. Yet a troubling contradiction bordering on dishonesty casts a shadow over today's mighty push for universal pre-K education in America. The principal intellectual and moral argument that advocates make is similar to that of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) backers: giving needy kids a boost up the ladder of educational and later-life success by narrowing the achievement gaps that now trap too many of them on the lower rungs. In this article, the author talks about pre-kindergarten as one of the hottest topics in American education in 2009 and discusses the campaign for universal or near-universal pre-K education. The author stresses that preschool, done right, tightly targeted, and intensively delivered, with sound cognitive standards, quality criteria and readiness assessments, is the proper work of early-childhood educators and what is already a vast preschool and child-care industry.
Descriptors: Preschool Education, Federal Legislation, Academic Achievement, Access to Education, Educational Legislation, At Risk Students, Disadvantaged Youth, Cognitive Development, School Readiness, Preschool Teachers, Early Intervention, Public Education
Hoover Institution. Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305-6010. Tel: 800-935-2882; Fax: 650-723-8626; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.hoover.org/publications/ednext
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Preschool Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001