After the results were looked over, they showed that "not a single one of the 114 tests administered to first graders — of academics, socio-emotional development, health care/health status and parenting practice — showed a reliable, statistically significant effect from participating in Head Start." -Remso Martinez Go To Site

Numerous studies on Head Start, the federal pre-K program for poor kids, show that its reading and math gains virtually evaporate by fourth grade. And the latest evidence from Oklahoma and Georgia, two states that implemented universal pre-K in the 1990s, only confirms this.

  Oklahoma's high-school graduation rates have dropped since it embraced UPK and Georgia's remain stagnant. The average reading score of Oklahoma's fourth graders on the NAEP -- the national report card -- dropped four points between 1998 and 2011. -Shikha Dalmia, The Myth of the Scientific Liberal, Go To Site

Yet another high-quality study is raising serious doubts about the centerpiece of the Democrats’ family-policy agenda: Publicly-funded early-childhood education.

  Following up on two similar studies on universal Pre-K programs in Tennessee and Quebec, British researchers examined the effects of a Labour-backed reform that introduced “free part-time pre-school places for three year olds in England in the early 2000s.” Overall, the policy made daycare more affordable for some families, but had very little effect on students’ educational achievement in the long-run. -The American Interest Go To Site

Government, Incompetence, Oops, Education

Perhaps preschool doesn't help children as much as we thought — or hoped. A new study by Mark Lipsey, Dale Farran, and Kerry Hofer finds that children who were admitted to Tennessee's pre-K program were worse off by the end of first grade than children who didn't make the cut...

  The problem is those results dissipate by the end of kindergarten — by then, the group that attended pre-K is no better off than the group that didn't — and then begin to reverse by the end of first grade. By the end of second grade, the children who attended the pre-K program are scoring lower on both behavioral and academic measures than the children who didn't.

  The researchers admit they're "perplexed" by their findings, but note that their results echo the findings of the Head Start Impact Study, which was also an unusually well-designed, randomized experiment. And while the researchers don't bring it up, their findings also echo new evidence out of Quebec, which launched a massive day care program that was successful in signing children up, but seems to have slightly hurt them over time.

Editorial, Liberal, Government, Incompetence, Education, Waste

We spend more than $7 billion providing Head Start to nearly 1 million children each year. And finally there is indisputable evidence about the program's effectiveness, provided by the Department of Health and Human Services: Head Start simply does not work. According to the Head Start Impact Study, which was quite comprehensive, the positive effects of the program were minimal and vanished by the end of first grade. Head Start graduates performed about the same as students of similar income and social status who were not part of the program. These results were so shocking that the HHS team sat on them for several years, according to Russ Whitehurst of the Brookings Institution, who said, "I guess they were trying to rerun the data to see if they could come up with anything positive. They couldn't."

Head Start Education Program: No Lasting Impact

For 48 years, liberals have used the Head Start education program for low income kids as the shining example of how the federal government can make a difference to the lives of people. But a new study suggests otherwise. So why keep spending $180 on an ineffective program?

Government, Incompetence, Financial

“Head Start,” the flagship pre-kindergarten program introduced in 1965, has been a $166 billion failure. That’s the upshot of a sophisticated multi-year study just released by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Government, Incompetence

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When the Head Start Impact Study generally failed to show cognitive or behavioral improvements that lasted beyond kindergarten, Head Start’s defenders pointed to possible “sleeper effects” as a reason to keep the program going. The argument is that Head Start may have imparted a benefit that is not detectable in the elementary years but that emerges later on. -Jason Richwine Go To Site