American Early Childhood: Preventing or Perpetuating Inequity?
Equity in Education Forum Series, Spring 2009
Teachers College, Columbia University
"Unlike merely two decades ago, early childhood
education is currently regarded as a magical panacea that prepares young
children for school and life, equalizes opportunity, and prevents welfare
dependence, incarceration, teenage pregnancy, and school dropout. While a
veritable aura of success encases contemporary early childhood education, few
analyses have scrutinized these accolades and examined the realities. This
paper dons an equity lens and addresses ’s contemporary commitments
to all its young children. It discusses
early childhood education’s successes as well as its failures, noting that
children’s access to, and experiences in, early childhood settings vary
dramatically depending on where children live, how much money their parents
have, and the color of their skin. The paper suggests that while early
childhood education has the proven potential to prevent educational inequity, if not dramatically improved, it will
do the reverse and perpetuate it." - Excerpt from "American Early Childhood Education"
Sharon Lynn Kagan, Virginia and Leonard Marx Professor of Early Childhood and Family Policy, Teachers College, Columbia University
Clive Belfield, Associate Professor, Queens College, City University of New York
Nancy Kolben, Executive Director, Child Care, Inc.
Michael Rebell, Executive Director, Campaign for Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University
- Kagan, Sharon L. (2009). American Early Childhood: Preventing or Perpetuating Inequity?. Equity Matters: Research Review No. 3. New York, NY: The Campaign for Educational Equity.
- Audio Podcast (iTunes required)