Preschool's Hot: Now What?

The work I do is having its 15 minutes of fame. Suddenly, everyone’s dying to talk to me about early childhood education. My husband’s cousin sends me a PDF of an article in the Burlington Free Press about Vermont’s $37,000 Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge grant. His colleague emails to ask if prekindergarten is too late to begin readying kids for school. A composer I’ve just met, at an Adirondack retreat, is enraptured as I hold forth on the importance of play and the toxic effects of current education policy on young children’s development. Eureka!

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Educational Equity & UPK: Straight Talk on the Numbers

As Bill de Blasio and Andrew Cuomo engage in parallel play around the funding of universal prekindergarten, the media’s having a field day. “Alpha males,” as one observer commented, duking it out in the sandbox.

Earlier this week, New York Times reporter, Javier Hernandez, wrote that few states have implemented universal preschool, making it difficult to cost it out. His piece provided local color from New Jersey—a good choice, given the state’s admirable track record with pre-K, the result of the grueling, long Abbott vs. Burke equity lawsuit, which established a “thorough and efficient” education . . . Read full article →

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Nick Kristof Misses the Boat on the Modern Family

As the U.S. grapples with growing inequality and opportunity gaps, Nicholas Kristof has been polling his readers for topics he’s neglected in his punditry. Among the suggestions: family breakdown and the rise of single-parent households. “This is an issue that…the right has hijacked and the left has been reluctant to confront,” writes the New York Times columnist. An issue tangled up with the narrative that “hectors the poor for their poverty.”

Kristof lauds conservatives for zeroing in on family instability as a threat to the well-being of children, citing the greater likelihood of kids raised by a . . . Read full article →

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