(MINNEAPOLIS) -- Getting kids engaged in school and other organized activities early on in life has been shown to enhance their subsequent well-being, particularly among economically disadvantaged kids.
The authors of a University of Minnesota study measured the long-term effects of a federally funded preschool program in the Chicago Public Schools that was first implemented in 1967, the Child-Parent Center (CPC) Education Program. They assessed the lives of over 15,000 adults who were born in 1979 or 1980, 1,000 of whom participated in the CPC.
They found that participation in the CPC preschool programs was associated with higher educational attainment, greater income and socioeconomic status, health insurance coverage, as well as lower rates of justice-system involvement and substance abuse. Interestingly, the authors found that the length of time spent in the program didn’t seem to affect the benefits seen later on.
They conclude that the long-lasting impacts seen in this study “provide a strong foundation for the investment in and promotion of early childhood learning.”
This study's findings were featured in Science.
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