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Large-scale study shows power of pre-k
Date:3/6/2014

ading ability."

Peisner-Feinberg added that Georgia's Pre-K Program also enhanced children's math skills, another key area of school readiness.

"It's important to note that positive effects of the program were found for all childrenboys and girls, from families with different income levels, as well as for children with differing proficiency with English," she said. "This is a universal pre-k program that truly benefits children from all backgrounds."

These findings are consistent with earlier studies of large-scale pre-k programs, including an FPG study of the statewide pre-k program in North Carolina and a study by researchers in Tulsa, Oklahoma, which also revealed positive impacts on language, literacy, and math skills in children from different family income levels.

According to Peisner-Feinberg, the results from Georgia are noteworthy because this study used a sophisticated design that allowed a comparison between two groups of children whose families chose to enroll them in the program, but only one group had participated at the time of the study. "There are not many studies of real-world programs like Georgia's pre-k that are actually able to include such a valid comparison group in order to examine the impact of the program on children's outcomes," she said.

FPG's newest study of Georgia's Pre-K Program already has begun and will follow pre-k graduates through third grade. Peisner-Feinberg, who has headed many previous statewide evaluations of pre-k programs in Georgia and elsewhere, says prior research has shown that pre-k programs can continue to help children for several grades afterward.

"With North Carolina's pre-k program, our studies consistently find positive effects of participation on children's performance in pre-k and kindergarten, as well as longer-term effects on reading and math skills at the end of third grade," she said.

Peisner-Feinberg added that bringing researched-based rec
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Contact: Dave Shaw
Dave@unc.edu
919-621-3933
Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

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