Results of a ten year study show at-risk students who attended Pre-K do better in elementary and middle school.
Gary Asmus of the Cecil J. Picard Center at University of Louisiana at Lafayette presented the results to the House Education Committee on Wednesday. Students who attended LA 4, Louisiana’s state run pre-school program for 4-year-olds, were more likely to reach eighth grade on time and fewer were placed in special education.
Asmus said the results bode well for Act 3, the Early Childhood Education Act passed last year. Act 3 calls for higher academic standards for pre-school programs that receive public funding, and not just for pre-schools enrolling 4-year olds but even younger kids.
“The thing that we hope to see from Act Three is this extension down to kids basically starting at birth, that by providing high quality early childhood education to even younger children will see even greater affects," said Asmus.
However, Act 3 does not expand LA4 and some are worried that the new academic standards will put some pre-schools out of business.