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Mar 22

Is Head Start Helping Children Succeed and Does Anyone Care?

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Speaking on early childhood education programs last year, President Obama said “Even as we invest in early childhood education, let's raise the bar for early learning programs that are falling short. Now, today, some children are enrolled in excellent programs. Some children are enrolled in mediocre programs. And some are wasting away their most formative years in bad programs.” Recently released results from the federal government’s rigorous Head Start Impact Study indicate that children participating in Head Start are doing no better by the end of first grade on academic, social, or health outcomes than comparable children who lost a lottery to attend the same over-subscribed Head Start programs. Yet the President has proposed a $1 billion increase in Head Start’s budget for 2011. Why isn’t the media reporting the results of this study and what should the results portend for future federal investments in Head Start and other early childhood initiatives?

More About the Speakers

David B. Muhlhausen, Ph.D.
Senior Policy Analyst,
Center for Data Analysis,
The Heritage Foundation

Russ Whitehurst
Director of the Brown Center on Education Policy,
The Brookings Institution

Nicholas Zill, Ph.D.
Former Director of the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES)
and the Head Start National Reporting System (NRS) at Westat

Debra Viadero
Associate Editor,
Education Week

Hosted By

Jennifer A. Marshall Jennifer A. Marshall

Vice President for the Institute for Family, Community, and Opportunity, and the Joseph C. and Elizabeth A. Anderlik Fellow Read More