When it comes to education, the earlier the better is the perfect tagline. It would be a lie if i said there’s a magic pill to ensure lifetime fulfillment and success in all aspects of life, but research shows that continual success is partly influenced by high quality early childhood education.
It may not surprise you to know that early childhood experiences have an impact on life beyond the playground. Remediation of undesirable behavior is easy if caught early and when learning deficiencies are noticed early, its less expensive to teach children. If your child lags from the beginning, chances are they wont be able to catch up.
Perhaps the most often cited study for the benefits of early education is the HighScope Perry preschool experiment that assigned randomly 123 at-risk low income black students to either a control group or a high-quality, two year pre-school program. These students were followed from ages three through 50. The impact of the pre-school program was powerful. Of those who participated in the program, 65% graduated from high school compared to 45% in the control group. By age 40, the annual income of those who were in the program was $20,800 compared to $15,300 in the control group. As the Loeb and Bassok article states, the study showed that those in the program “were more likely to be employed, to raise their own children, to own a home or a car, and to be far less likely to experience arrests or utilize drugs.”
Viewed nationwide, if all families were able to enroll their children in pre-school programs at the same rate as high-income families do now, the total enrollment nationwide would increase by around 13 percent and would yield a present value of at least $4.8 billion – some estimates approximate this number as high as $16.1 billion – from the lifetime earnings per person after deducting the costs of the program. Compounded, the higher earnings account for between $9,000 and over $30,000 when the program costs are subtracted. 3 to 5 percent higher income gains are to be expected for adults who went to preschool as children compared to those who didn’t.
Wise investments early on in your child’s education will lead to a substantially better life for them.
What’s your take on early childhood education? Let us know in the comments section
First published at Forbes