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Early Education: the Need for Preschool for All

By elizer79 Oct 21, 2005 1455 Words
Early Education: The Need for Preschool for all, Not only Beneficial but an Investment The No Child left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001 encourages families and schools of the use of federal funds for early education programs such as preschool. However this federal Act falls under flaws. The act states that only eligible children will qualify for this program. Their eligibility will be based on the child age, and whether the child applying for the benefits is at risk of not achieving academic standards. Thus, the family income would be the main factor to determinate the child eligibility (Mary Payne 1). This Act passed on 2001 contradicts it self because many children in the country are still left without an early education. The reason being is that families are unable to meet the income requirements. Research in early brain development show that if a child is exposed to an emotional, physical, and intellectual environment; his or her brain will function better than those who don't participate ("California Children & Families Commission",sec-1). It's clear that early educational programs such as preschool are essential to every child to become a productive human being in society. Studies show that Kids entering kindergarten are expected to know different motor skills that will enable them to perform in academic and social tasks, which school environment demands. In this study, researchers identified social skills critical for success in school classrooms. They also identified self-control and cooperation skills as high essential to a better educational system (Brian J. Cratty 27-43).These skills are clearly important because a child may be asked to work in a group, or to finish an individual task, listen to a story, follow simple verbal instructions, take turns or share, and even going to the toilet. Also kids are expected to have mastered many muscle skills, such as walking, running and requiring eye and hand coordination such as, the use of a pencil, and sometimes even knowing how to write their own name. But if a child is taught these few basic skills early in life, his or her potential to become a productive individual increases.

A third grade teacher, Chris Montague suggested in Cooper's research "If children don't have solid reading skills by the time they reach my classroom, they will have trouble throughout the rest of their schooling" (Susana Cooper 1). When a child attends preschool their brain is like a sponge because they begin to develop intellectual skills that will help them achieve academic skill. These skills are mathematical problems and reading techniques. These academic skills are the foundation to achieve success in life. Our mathematical and reading techniques are essential because there being used in every moment of our lives; math is used when we pay for our groceries at the store, and we use reading to read an important legal document. Life is based in basic skills that could be taught early in life through early childhood programs. Pre-school programs are very beneficial to our society. As children attend pre-school their parents are more likely to get involved with their kids daily activities. Pre-school programs not only provide children with useful skills, but also provides parent with essential information. Parent are provided with brochures and flyers about how to approach their children development, and effectively practice parenting skills ("Improve Family Functioning" 7).This program is very beneficial to build stronger families, meaning that if a child spends quality time with his or her parents or legal guardians; the child would developed better communication skills. To support my findings, Prof. Annie L. Butler's research shows that the families who share the pre-school experiences with their kids, they would define the role of parents and professionals so that both could share the educational responsibility (38). By the parents spending quality time with their children in school, kids get gain better understanding of what was discuss in their classroom, and they tend to review school material at home with there parents. As the graph below shows, Special Education Placement is grater among children who didn't attend pre-school by a difference of 11% making it almost half of those who attended preschool, and a 15% difference when looking at the Grade Retention level. Most High School graduates are among those who started their education by first attending preschool. So, based on the information provide by the graph below, we can conclude that early education such as preschools should be available to all children. If we want our children to perform better in school and become well educated; we most take action and enroll our children in early educational programs.

Fig.1 Children who attend preschool tend to do better as the years pass, by Reynolds and Schweinhar; rpt, in Susana Cooper (2). The data in the above graph, it strongly suggests that it would be a mistake if our government is looking to save money by not providing young children with the education they need to become successful in life. Researcher Jessica Sowa, stated "'If we want to solve issues later in life [we] need to invest in kids in early development,'" (Angela Pascopella 3). Sowa's point of view about early education relates to the graph provided by Susan Cooper because children who attended preschool were less like to get arrested by a 28% difference. Early education would not only prevent crime, it would also help our economy. Studies Show that early education is a long investment: [Research suggest] that for $1 spent on preschool, society gains $4[in profit], according to the Abecedarian Project . . . and $7, according to the Chicago studies. . . [And] $9, according to the Perry Preschool project. . . . School districts can save more than $11,000 per child because are less likely to need special or remedial education. (Angela Pascopella 3).

If we refer back to the graph on page (4), it shows that 35% of the children that got arrested were not part of the preschool program. By these young kids committing crimes and getting arrested, our governmental agencies spent twice much money in trying to reform these young kinds to fit back in to society. Moreover even by providing facts by these studies, the federal Administration early this spring has proposed a budget cut for early education programs (Angela Pascopella 4). The government has made it clear to the public that they are not focusing in early educational program for children because they believe that these programs are too expensive. In addition, the Federal government spends millions of dollars in other programs that do not contribute back to society. Just in California there has been five new prisons built with the last three years ("State Prisons", ca.gov). Our Government is sending the wrong message to the public by not making early education the top of their agenda.

In conclusion, early educational programs like preschool are very beneficial because the valuable skills children gain through out their first years in life. It's important to teach skills that will encourage children to become successful and to archive their dreams. These programs would not only benefit the child but it would also benefit society as a whole in a financial aspect. People argue that in California and in many other states about not being able to fix the problem which arise staring kindergartens through twelve graders. If they can't fix the problem within kindergarten and High school, they should not consider investing in preschool until the problem is fixed. "California must take a lead . . . in making sure children have the chance to start strong in school" says Lewis Platt (Susana Cooper 2).Relating to this quote early school programs would not only make them strong in school, but it will help aid them to become more confident and productive in society.

____________
Buttler, Annie L., ed. Early Child Education. Newo York: New York,1974.
Cratty J.Bryant , "Motor Development in Early Childhood:
Critical Issues for Researchers in the 1980's." Hand Book of Research in Early Childhood Education. ED. Bernard
Spodek. New York: New York, 1982 27-46.
"Cooper,Susana, (Kinds can't wait learn)." Preschool California. 1 January 2004.
http://www.preschoolcalifornia.org/doc/pdf/pc-
advocacy-report-04-pdf. (28 April. 2004).
"First Five California." California Children & Families
Commission. http://www.ccfc.ca.gov. (4 April. 2004).
Pascopella, Angela. "The ABC's of early ED: experts believe

reducing funds for early childhood education is suicide." District Administration v39 i8 (August, 2003)30pp
(4).Internet.26 April.2005.
"Mary Payne, (Title 1, Part a Preschool Program)." California
Department of Education. 13 Sept. 2004.
http://www.cde.ca.gov/sp/sw/tl/titleIpreschool.asp (8 May.2005).

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