Chapter

Preschool for All

Elizabeth Rose

in The Promise of Preschool

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780195395075
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199775767 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195395075.003.0006
Preschool for All

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Inspired by the success of preschool in these states, advocates, foundation leaders, and business allies built a movement for universal preschool. Rather than continuing to push for the expansion of targeted programs like Head Start, they shifted to a universal strategy, believing that a program that served middle‐class families would ultimately build more enduring political support. The involvement of the Pew Charitable Trusts served as a catalyst, pouring funding into selected state campaigns, bringing together different constituencies across the country, and focusing unprecedented attention on pre‐kindergarten as a solution to educational and social problems. Support for expanding preschool relied on a strong research base that documented the promise of preschool for improving the life chances of disadvantaged children. But the movement's vision of providing “preschool for all” was challenged, both by those who preferred to target scarce resources to the neediest children, and by critics who feared increasing government's role in raising children in general.

Keywords: universal preschool; Pew Charitable Trusts; Committee for Economic Development; foundations; business leaders; economic benefits

Chapter.  8842 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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