Who Attends Publicly Funded Preschool in Maryland? (2.26.14)
Maryland provides publicly funded preschool for economically disadvantaged 4-year olds and some 3-year olds. In this data brief we describe enrollment trends in publicly funded preschool in Maryland and show how enrollment varies by race/ethnicity. We also examine changes in state funding for publicly funded preschool over time.
Can Maryland Benefit from Universal Preschool? A Review of the Research on the Efficacy of Early Education (2.12.14)
Gail L. Sunderman & Caroline Titan
Access to universal preschool has garnered the attention of politicians and policymakers in Maryland and across the nation as a means to capitalize on learning that takes place in the early years. This attention has generated debate about the benefits of early education, in part because expanding access to preschool requires significant funding, but also because the research on early education can appear contradictory.
This policy brief summarizes the research on early education and examines arguments for and against universal preschool from a research perspective. It surveys new knowledge from neuroscience on how early childhood experiences affect learning and brain development, summarizes findings from program evaluations of preschool programs, and reviews the literature on the costs and benefits of expanding preschool. Taken together, these various streams of research present a compelling argument for investing in early education programs.