In 2015, 42 states and the District of Columbia spent $6.2 billion in state funds on pre-kindergarten (pre-K) programs, a fact that represents a growing commitment to pre-K as a means to help children from disadvantaged families increase their school readiness. But while numerous studies have documented the success of pre-K programs in preparing students for elementary school, some researchers—most notably the authors of a much-discussed analysis of universal pre-K programs in Tennessee—are raising questions about the sustainability of pre-K benefits as children move through their early schooling. How can states optimize their pre-K programs to provide both the strongest early learning boost and a solid foundation for future learning?
On April 17, a group of leading pre-K researchers will present the results of a collaboration designed to present a consensus statement about the state of knowledge on pre-K education. That statement—presented in six consensus facts—is embedded in a fuller report on the role of pre-K curriculum, cost-benefit studies, financing, and more. A presentation of the consensus statement will be followed by two panel discussions. Participating in this event will be Candice McQueen, commissioner of education for Tennessee, the site of an on-going research-policy partnership aimed at ensuring that young children acquire the intellectual and social skills the nation will need in the future.
Event participants will take questions from the audience, and the event will be live webcast. You can follow along on Twitter with #PreKResearch.