‘State of Preschool’ Report Shows Some Progress But Still a Ways to Go

Media Contact: Brendan Daly (202.794.1580)

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 11, 2015) – Today, the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University released its annual report on The State of Preschool for the 2013-14 school year.

The report shows states are working to increase funding for public preschool programs and that is having a modest effect on enrollment nationwide. And program quality standards increased as an unprecedented seven states gained ground on NIEER’s 10 benchmarks for quality standards.

However, the report also shows that there is more work to be done for publicly-funded preschool. Just 29 percent of the nation’s 4-year-olds and 4 percent of 3-year-olds were enrolled in state-funded preschool. And as of the 2013-14 school year, 10 states still had no publicly-funded early childhood education programs in place.

“Today’s report from NIEER shows that while some progress has been made, we still have a ways to go until we have quality preschool for all children in America,” said Mark Shriver, president of Save the Children Action Network. “Research has shown conclusively that early learning programs are critical to kids’ success in school and life. It’s not surprising that a growing and broad range of leaders and organizations – from across the political spectrum — are convinced of early childhood education’s powerful promise. It’s time for leaders in Washington to prioritize early childhood education so that more children get a strong start.”

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Save the Children Action Network is the political voice for kids. We believe that every child deserves the best start in life. That’s why we’re building bipartisan will and voter support to make sure every child in the U.S. has access to high-quality early learning and that no mother or child around the globe dies from a preventable disease or illness. By investing in kids and holding leaders accountable, we are helping kids from birth to age five survive and thrive.