Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Early Childhood Education: Ensuring Academic Success

Early childhood education is becoming a national crisis, particularly in low-income communities. Learn how to help.

With the next presidential election only a little over a year away, issues are surfacing with not only the economic crisis, but also with the early childhood education crisis.

The Problem
Millions of children from low-income families are starting kindergarten far behind the standard curve. During the ages of 3-5, the brain develops very rapidly, so it’s crucial that even if the child is not in preschool or daycare, parents are involved, ensuring their child’s future academic success. However, in many low-income families, both parents may not be present, or they may both have to work and are unable to afford early childhood education services. Because of this, and other factors such as access to books, children in low-income neighborhoods start kindergarten 60 percent behind wealthier peers.

The education gap is preventable, but it will take a lot of time and effort from the government, schools and the community. Jumpstart is a non-profit organization that engages community members to help children in low-income neighborhoods develop literary skills for kindergarten and their education.

How You Can Help
On Thursday, October 6, millions will read with a child to represent year-long educational support for pre-school age children of low-income communities. This year’s Read for the Record book is Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney. If you want to help jump-start a child’s education, learn more.

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