Invest in pre-K
In response to the editorial “Universal pre-K? It would be a huge waste that would dwarf Head Start's failure” : In my work with the Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children, I see every day the benefits of high-quality preschool.
The evidence is overwhelming in proving that investing in high-quality pre-K is a smart choice. At-risk children who experience high-quality pre-K are less likely to commit crimes later in life. Society gains more productive citizens, with reduced reliance on social services and higher lifetime earnings.
The economy gets a boost. In the immediate picture, every dollar invested in pre-K circulates $2 in local economic impact. And there's an astounding long-term return of $17 for every dollar, through public savings and benefit.
As a parent, I'm excited to be a part of the Pre-K for PA campaign, which is dedicated to ensuring that every 3- and 4-year-old in Pennsylvania has access to high quality pre-K.
The foundations for the success of every child are laid in the first, critical years of life, from birth to age 5. When we invest in high-quality pre-K, we invest in a stronger Pennsylvania.
The writer is executive director of he Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children (paeyc.org).