Studies show universal preschool isn’t as great as Obama says

Forget gun control! President Barack Obama has a new plan to reduce violent crime: Preschool for all!

During his State of the Union address on Tuesday night, the President outlined his vision for universal preschool, arguing that early schooling can help children succeed and diminish negative behaviors and outcomes.

“Every dollar we invest in high-quality early education can save more than seven dollars later on — by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy, even reducing violent crime,” Obama assured the country that’s currently in $16.4 trillion in debt.

While Obama’s vision for preschool sounds nice, it isn’t based in fact.

One of the main studies universal preschool advocates like Obama highlight is the The Perry Program in Michicgan that boasted a $7.16 return on investment, because more students who went through the program graduated from high school, found a job and earned more than those who didn’t go through the program. What they don’t tell you is that this study used a very small sample size and would be very hard to recreate, according to The Heritage Foundation. Not to mention, no other preschool program has been nearly as successful as the Perry Program.

In fact, studies by Stanford University and the University of California showed that attending preschool can actually cause bad behavior, not reduce it like Obama claims, possibly because students are spending less time with their parents at such a crucial age.

Obama also cited Oklahoma and Georgia, two states that provide universal preschool to 4-year-olds, as an argument for his case.

“In states that make it a priority to educate our youngest children, like Georgia or Oklahoma, studies show students grow up more likely to read and do math at grade level, graduate high school, hold a job and form more stable families of their own,” he said on Tuesday.”So let’s do what works, and make sure none of our children start the race of life already behind. Let’s give our kids that chance.”

In 2008, Georgia spent $325 million and Oklahoma spend $139 million on their respective preschool programs. So do the benefits outweigh the costs like Obama promises? The evidence says no. Studies show that students who attend preschool lose any academic edge over those who didn’t by the third grade, according to Heritage.

And when Connecticut sought to provide universal preschool last September, the program was estimated to cost the state $43.8 million a year and $220.6 million on top of that to build classrooms, according to The CT Mirror.

And that’s just one state. Imagine how much it would cost to provide preschool to the whole country.

Comments

Comments

  1. Roger Mitchell says:

    Look LBJ and his great society Bull back in 65 started a program called head start .. Aka National free pre school for poor kids free food free drink free rides free free free.. and today after many Federal dollars waste on even more useless studies they all say its a dump money wasting program.. last I looked into that on average they where wasting right at $8,000.00 per head a yr and an annual budget of over 8 Billion a yr. not to mention close to 220,000 paid teachers averaging 30 K per yr and and six times that number work as volunteers and the kids learn nothing but finger painting ..I was married to a teacher there (: she quit after a 4 yrs old threatened to cut her throat.. And had the knife to do the job after trying to correct his Grammar Only place hiring now day is the Federal Gov..

  2. Brenda says:

    Sesame Street doesn’t give kids any edge, head start doesn’t give them one, pre-school doesn’t give them one. Children do not need to be indoctrinated that early in life. They need to be at home with a parent who will discipline them in the right way. The difference between how the average 5 year old thinks and the average 6 year old is incredible. Kindergarten is not health for children and is of little benefit in the long run.

  3. KatieOh says:

    You are completely correct. A friend’s wife was the Director of a Head Start location and it cost SO much to run it and then the Gov’t. couldn’t keep them afloat. So they cut back on the teachers and then cut their budget. Finally, the only folks there couldn’t handle the kids all by themselves. The children had many problems, stemming from family and mental problems. It was a horrible mess and they weren’t learning what they should have been. Total waste of money. She finally gave up the Directorship just to have a normal life and be rid of the problems that no amount of fixing would resolve!

  4. Dah says:

    If our current schools are failing miserably, why would more of the same at a younger age do better?

  5. DonnaNed says:

    Studies have shown that when parents simply talk to their young children, learning and comprehension are enhanced significantly for children. It makes sense that listening to parents and one-on-one conversation with an adult would be absolutely superior to other forms of early education. Much better than the idea of placing small children in a large group with one teacher and with children with many discipline problems (and other issues). Talking to our children is something we did persistently and all of our older children have now graduated from college, one majoring in bio-chemistry, one in music and one earning a doctorate in philosophy. It really works! Obviously, there is more involved in education than simply talking to your kids, but this is where a truly good education starts – the minute the child is born. You can begin right away! And it’s economical, too!

Polititainment

Obama: LeBron 'did the right thing'

President Obama supports LeBron James' decision to wear an "I can't breathe" t-shirt during warmup before the NBA game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Brooklyn Nets last week.

Al Sharpton, Hollywood's Sony Liaison

In a private meeting with Rev. Al Sharpton at the Greenwich Hotel in New York City Thursday, Sony Pictures chair Amy Pascal told Sharpton that he could have a voice in how the movie studio makes its films.

Clooney: Release 'The Interview' online

George Clooney may have the most awesomely toothy response to the Sony Pictures cyberattack that forced the movie studio to pull the film "The Interview" from its December 25 release.

Jon Stewart might ruin your childhood

Jon Stewart brought his nightmare-inducing recurring character “Gitmo” on the show to talk about the normalization of U.S. relations with Cuba.

Colbert's embargo on the Vatican

Colbert had to chide his audience Wednesday night for getting excited about making “Cuba more libre.”

White House

Obama: we can’t have censorship subject to ‘some dictator someplace’

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama declared Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader, and he pledged the U.S. would respond "in a place and manner and time that we choose" to the hacking attack on Sony that led to the withdrawal. The FBI blamed the hack on the communist government.

U.S. confirms North Korea was behind Sony attack and promises ‘proportional’ response

Officials no longer merely suspect North Korea to be behind the cyberattack on Sony Picture—they’ve confirmed it.

District court declares Obama’s executive action on immigration unconstitutional
A federal court in Pennsylvania declared parts of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration unconstitutional Tuesday. Judge Arthur J. Schwab, sitting in the western district of Pennsylvania, said presidents do have the power to use discretion in deciding how to enforce laws, but found that Obama’s recent executive action went much further than that.  He said Obama was writing […]
Obama administration extends Pell grants to juvenile offenders
The Obama administration has set out new guidelines that allow for students sentenced to juvenile correctional facilities to be eligible for federal Pell grants. The U.S. Department of Education and Department of Justice sent out a joint release Monday that clarified an earlier law. Congress in 1994 prohibited inmates at federal and state prisons from receiving Pell Grants […]
White House denies report that it wants to delay release of CIA torture report

The White House is insisting it wants the Senate Intelligence Committee to release its report on CIA torture practices, despite a report that Secretary of State John Kerry is trying to scuttle it.

Congress

Rubio says Rand Paul is clueless on Cuba

Sen. Marco Rubio made his criticism of a fellow Republican plain Thursday night.

Gowdy's office responds to Speaker chatter

Rep. Trey Gowdy has become a sensation on the Right, with his no-nonsense style and committee hearing takedowns of Obama officials garnering him praise and attention.

Rand Paul: 'Opening up Cuba is a good idea'

Sen. Rand Paul broke with the Republican Party's prevailing argument against President Obama's Cuba policy Thursday, saying the move toward opening trade with the long-embargoed nation "probably" is a good idea.

Retiring DemHenry Waxman's farewell ode to govt

You'd think that, 40 years in, a congressman might grow cynical about the prospects of government meddling. Not retiring Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.)!

Senate Confirms Pro-Gun Control Surgeon General
NATIONAL JOURNAL — The Senate narrowly confirmed a new surgeon general whose nomination was delayed for months in a fight over his comments alleging that guns are a public health issue. The confirmation represents a victory for gun-control advocates, even as recent polling has shown Americans moving in the other direction toward gun-rights protections. The […]