A new MassBudget report examines options for improving educational opportunity for children in Massachusetts by expanding access to early education and care and improving quality. The research is clear that the education and care that children receive when they are three and four years old is critical to setting them on a path to success in school and in life.
While some children in Massachusetts are in pre-kindergarten programs in our public schools, and others are served by Head Start and programs funded by our state Department of Early Education and Care, close to twenty thousand lower income children in Massachusetts are not able to attend publicly funded early education and care programs. This has a direct effect on the ability of those kids to thrive and also on their parents' ability to remain in the workforce.
Building a Foundation for Success examines options that range from covering all lower income children through our existing early education and care system to educating all three and four year olds in our public schools. It also describes potential hybrid models that would build on the strengths of both our public schools and private providers. For each option the paper examines issues of cost, quality, and access. the paper doesn't prescribe a particular structure for the state or for each program. Rather it presents a number of paths for building a system that can provide all of our children with the support they need to develop into the successful and productive adults needed to build a strong economy and a healthy.
The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget) produces policy research, analysis, and data-driven recommendations focused on improving the lives of low- and middle-income children and adults, strengthening our state's economy, and enhancing the quality of life in Massachusetts.
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Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center | 15 Court Square | Suite 700 | Boston | MA | 02108