Research into the benefits of early childhood education demonstrates contrasting results. Research shows that the academic benefits of attending preschool are gone by grade 2 of primary school. However, the lifelong benefits of acquiring an early childhood education are evident well into a child’s 30s.
Kids in preschool programs are less likely to be arrested or to struggle with substance abuse. They are more likely to have attended and completed a tertiary education.
Overall, the benefits of early childhood education aren’t coming from the academic skills they are taught in their early years. Indeed, studies have shown negative effects of early childhood education in this regard. Control children caught up with preschool students on kindergarten and subsequent tests and generally outperformed them.
Instead, early learning environments assist young children because they provides reliable care during the day. It improves parenting practice, probably because busy parents have time to look after their other priorities. Parents can therefore dedicate more intensive support to children during their time together.
Furthermore, a high quality early childhood education is often packed full of health interventions. This has been shown to deliver life affecting long-term health outcomes.
Tests evaluating the academic performance of children throughout primary school have shown no demonstrable improvement in results. Children who attended early childhood education programs perform no better than their counterparts who didn’t. There are exceptions to this, for example in schools that offer preschool to supplement their comprehensive K-6 program. However, such examples are few and far between.
Long-term studies conversely demonstrate better outcomes for children who attended preschool. These studies tracked a cohort of children who attended preschool and compare them with siblings who didn’t. Results suggested that children who participated in an early education program often have better lives. They were:
Four times more likely to graduate from college
Five times less likely to have been reliant on public assistance
Significantly reduced chances of being arrested.
Children who have a safe and nurturing daytime environment can develop skills they need to thrive later in life. We may not expect to see academic benefits from playing and caring for children at a very young age. We may, however, expect them to be happier and healthier because of this care.
Indeed, in examples where early childhood education has been made free. Parents have been shown as more likely to pursue additional education and gain employment where they otherwise wouldn’t. These life improvements undoubtedly have benefits for the children who are participating in preschool. Parents are better equipped to handle life’s dilemmas and their children benefit.
A safe daycare and a stable home environment make a big difference on the overall wellbeing of children. Greater family stability and wealth, which childcare enables, produces long lasting, positive results. Children learn about the same amount of information regardless of whether or not they attend preschool. Their social and emotional skills following child care, however, are more advanced.
Contact Robyn Taylor to discuss early childhood education at her early learning centre in Croydon, Sydney. The staff at Robyn Taylor Early Education Centre will be happy to answer any questions you have when you call. Learn more today by reading our blog and let your child develop to become school ready by enrolling today.