The Benefits of Pre-K: What the Research Shows

July 17, 2014 / Briefs 2014 / 0 Comments /

What is universal pre-kindergarten? 

Pre-kindergarten refers to programs that provide a year of education prior to entry into kindergarten. Universal programs are voluntary state programs that are open to all age-eligible children. Currently, the majority of state-funded Pre-K programs are targeted programs that primarily serve at-risk children (usually based on low family income).

How does Pre-K benefit children?

Research shows that Pre-K programs are typically of higher quality than other preschools or center-based programs and that Pre-K children are better prepared for school (Barnett 2008, Magnuson 2007).

For states that have already implemented universal Pre-K, the results have been impressive. 
  • Studies of Oklahoma’s Pre-K program find significant effects on test scores, language development, and motor skills at kindergarten entry (Gormley 2005).
  • Early gains were still detectable in 3rd grade (Hill 2012).
  • An evaluation of Georgia’s Pre-K program found that participants had stronger cognitive and language skills in kindergarten than children who did not attend (Henry 2006).

PreK_graphic_07172014

The benefits of Pre-K are not limited to test scores.

Children who receive high-quality Pre-K have:

  • better attendance
  • fewer behavior problems
  • increased chances of reading at grade level in 4th grade (Hill 2006, Gormley 2011).
Tennessee’s targeted Pre-K program has been shown to boost school readiness. 
  • An ongoing independent evaluation has found that during the year before kindergarten, Pre-K children develop literacy, language, and math skills faster than non-participating children.
  • Gains made by Pre-K children are 37 to 176 percent greater than those of non-Pre-K children and persist into the elementary grades.
  • When they begin kindergarten, Pre-K children are rated more highly than their peers on teachers’ assessments of school readiness (Lipsey 2011, SRG 2008).

How does Pre-K benefit communities?

How does universal, state-funded Pre-K compare to other programs?

Download full brief (PDF, 07/2014)
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Pre-K makes a difference

January 8, 2014 / Local Data / 0 Comments /
prekriskfactors

All test scores improve after one year for Pre-K.
Children with multiple family risk factors show the greatest improvement in scores after one year of Pre-K.

Source: Shahin Samiei, M. Sell & D. Imig. 2012. “Analysis of Pre-Kindergarten PPV-T scores by Family Risk Factors.”


Factors impacting reading readiness

January 8, 2014 / Local Data / 0 Comments /
impactingreadingreadiness

Early childhood differences influence reading readiness…
Memphis, TN, 2012

Source: Shahin Samiei, M. Sell, A. Bush & D. Imig. 2012. “Evaluating the relationship between the Imagination Library early childhood literacy program and kindergarten readiness.”

Pre-Kindergarten makes a world of difference.

July 17, 2013 / National Data / 0 Comments /
PreK_graphic_07172014

These research findings are based on state-funded pre-kindergarten programs and high quality early childhood programs such as High Scope Perry Preschool, Chicago Child-Parent, and Abecedarian Project.
Brief: The Benefits of Pre-K: What the Research Shows
Download full brief (PDF, 07/2014)
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