- Man pleads guilty but mentally ill in 2013 murder
- Telephone, computer network outages at 22 Rockford schools
- Byron native selected as Sailor of the Year for Navy Band Southwest
- Illinois Tollway awards $337 million in contracts, sets budget
- 44 earn bachelor’s degrees at Saint Anthony College of Nursing
- Goodwill opens Donation Express site on Perryville
- Rock Valley College to manage TechWorks program
- University of Illinois at Chicago names chancellor
- Salvation Army to distribute food, toys to nearly 2,000 families
- American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act signed into law
Reduced funding for pre-K programs not all that bad
The Rock River Times ran an article last week [online: “Report: Illinois ranks high for early childhood education access for 3-year-olds,” April 10] quoting preschool advocates who claim that reduced funding for state pre-K programs is a dire situation. That claim is actually not supported by the research about early childhood education, which universally concludes that small children grow best emotionally and mentally when in a stable home with a loving parent caregiver rather than an outside institution. Pre-K programs nearly never boost such children academically and socially because they already have all the right ingredients for a good future.
Pre-K programs are actually best targeted at children who do not have a stable home or literate parents, and function as a substitute for deficient parenting or home life. These are the children that the research shows pre-K programs help. But they are a minority.
This is why advocates for universal preschool are wrong, and their advocacy is not grounded in the research, which instead demonstrates that any subsidized preschool should be targeted at these specific kids with poor homes. In a state with fiscal problems that will soon be as bad as California’s, it is important that taxpayers and parents understand that state-funded universal preschool is actually unnecessary for children’s well-being.
Education research fellow, Heartland Institute
From the May 2-8, 2012, issue