Study: Pre-K and half-day kindergarten boost reading skills best

A study from the Center for Public Education looks at the effect of combinations of pre-k and kindergarten on third-grade reading skills.

The study focused on two combinations -- no pre-k and full-day kindergarten vs. pre-k and half-day kindergarten -- and found that a combination of pre-k and half-day kindergarten was significantly better. Students attending pre-k and half-day kindergarten are more likely to have higher reading skills by the third grade than those attending full-day kindergarten alone.

The impact of pre-k and half-day kindergarten was greatest for Hispanic children, black children, English Language Learners (ELL), and children from low-income families. The chances of Hispanic children and those below the poverty line reaching a higher reading level ranged anywhere from seven percent (for the basic third-grade reading level, "comprehension of words in context,") to over 20 percent (for the higher "extrapolation" level). The authors note that the findings do not take program quality into consideration, and that one could reasonably infer the impact of high-quality pre-k would be even greater. Findings also don't take into account how much time students spent in pre-k.

Read the summary here. Read the full report here

To read an Early Ed Watch blog that finds problems with the Center report, click here.

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