"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Race to the Top for Tots: The Real Goal of Pre-K Education in the US

USNews reported on research concluding that "Early education is a disaster in the US" because of low teacher compensation and preparation.  The study misses the point. The goal of pre-K in the US is to provide the private sector with another area of opportunity for profit. This is working out very well for the greedy minority who make money selling useless products to the pre-K market.

We are told that pre-K must be more academic, with more assessments and more materials, often involving expensive technology, in order to prepare children for the hard work they will have to do in kindergarten (sometimes called "kindergrind").

The fact that some research indicates no long-term advantage for pre-K tough love doesn't matter. Vanderbilt researchers have concluded that pre-K training resulted in "poorer work skills" and more negative feelings about school in kindergarten, but this has not stopped the race to the top for tots.

Stephen Krashen


Vanderbilt research: Lipsey, M. W., Farran, D.C., & Hofer, K. G., (2015). A Randomized Control Trial of the Effects of a Statewide Voluntary Prekindergarten Program on Children’s Skills and Behaviors through Third Grade (Research Report). Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University, Peabody Research Institute.

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