How Important is Preschool? Economist Says Kindergarten is Too LateApril 3, 2013
Quote of the DayApril 4, 2013
My post today at WHYY’s Newsworks looks at the state takeover of Camden Public Schools in the context of NJ’s successful Abbott preschools.
Two weeks ago the Christie Administration announced that the State was taking over the Camden City Public Schools District. Some view this additional measure of state control (Camden has had a state-appointed Fiscal Monitor for several years) as a boon to a city wracked by educational woes. But a vocal constituency contends that this loss of local control will lead to a surge of charter schools and other forms of school choice that will ultimately hurt traditional district schools. This disapprobation was on full display Monday evening at a Roundtable hosted by NJ Spotlight where, for example, a disgruntled audience member shouted at a Newark charter school leader, “You’re an outsider! You’re a disgrace!”
Sometimes timing is everything. About two weeks ago the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers released a report called “The Abbott Preschool Program Longitudinal Effects Study (APPLES).” Contrary to other national research, which has shown a somewhat modest impact of preschool on a student’s economic and academic prospects, this study extolled N.J.’s exemplary preschool program, which serves 41,000 kids who live in our poorest cities.
Read the rest here.