Pre-K isn’t an inoculation: What comes next matters

Important new research out of the University of Virginia. Provides additional support for P-3 approaches. The New America Foundation has a nice summary blog post. A few excerpts:

“In a new study out of the University of Virginia, The role of elementary school quality in the persistence of preschool effects, the authors find that the quality of the elementary school students matriculate into matters for whether pre-K gains persist. Which makes sense, right? It is unrealistic to expect the benefits gained in any one year of schooling to be maintained in a low-quality setting. In fact, the authors suggest that to believe so would be ‘to believe in magic.'”

This study is a welcome reminder that as it states, ‘preschool programs do prepare children academically for kindergarten, validating contemporary policy initiatives that focus on investing early,’  but that ‘we must pay careful attention to what is realistic to expect from one year of preschool education and the conditions under which its benefits persist or diminish.'”

When we talked to Rolf Grafwallner, program director for Early Childhood Initiatives at the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), he explained that ‘you have to look at this period [PreK-3rd] as a block. You can’t piecemeal it.'”

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