Assembly bill would extend ‘cradle-to-career’ state education

May 21, 2013

By Katy Grimes

SACRAMENTO — Some California educators want to educate your children “cradle-to-career.”

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In support of President Obama’s proposal to significantly increase federal spending on early childhood education and care, Assembly Concurrent Resolution 45 is by Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, D-San Diego. It would urge the Legislature to boost early childhood education funding in order to get children into day care and educational programs even before preschool.

Weber explained her bill Monday on the Assembly floor. A retired professor of African American Studies at San Diego State University, she touted the benefits of spending more money on parenting classes and on programs for babies and toddlers:

“A child who attends quality early care and education programs is less likely to be arrested and more likely to earn higher incomes than a child who does not, and the opportunity to participate in such programs prepares children to attain a higher standard of living as adults and to become members of the high-skilled workforce that is critical to our nation’s economic future.

“If we are only looking at preschool beginning at age 2-1/2 to three, we are missing a significant part of time when we should be stimulating the child.” 

Neglecting such development “could prove very harmful to the future of these children, especially African American males,” the Assembly Black Caucus noted.

Weber also explained of parenting classes, “Of all the things we are licensed to do, drive a car, own a business, we basically give birth to children with no training or background or assistance. That is why parenting classes are important.”

“I don’t want any of our five-year-olds to feel like a failure that first day of school,” added Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, D-Concord, also a teacher.

Said Assemblyman V. Manuel Perez, D-Coachella, “Every dollar we invest in high-quality early childhood education can save more than $7 later on, in less youth violence, improved social skills and reducing violent crime.”

Results

But the results just aren’t there.

Weber’s bill touted many studies showing a need for more and earlier childhood education and daycare. But a report from the Head Start program in October 2012 found that, by third grade, Head Start had little to no effect on participating children in the four areas of cognitive, social-emotional, health or parenting outcomes.

“Head Start, the flagship pre-kindergarten program introduced in 1965, has been a $166 billion failure,” according to Andrew Coulsen, director of the Cato Institute’s Center for Educational Freedom.

“But by the end of the first grade, even those few effects have disappeared, according to the follow-up released this month,” Coulsen said. “Out of 44 separate cognitive tests given to former Head Start students at the end of the first grade, only two showed even marginally significant effects. The other 42 showed no statistically significant effect at all.”

It also cited multiple studies finding that, while Head Start had some initial positive effects, most of those were not sustained into elementary school.

Studies show failures

Georgia and Oklahoma have universal preschool programs. A Georgia State University study on the effectiveness of the program covering data from 2001-2004 found that, by the end of first grade, children who did not attend preschool had skills similar to those students who had attended Georgia’s state preschools.

A Heritage Foundation study from 2009 found, “More than a decade after offering students universal preschool, neither Georgia nor Oklahoma has shown impressive gains in students’ academic achievement, as measured by the National Assessment of Educational Progress.”

While President Obama’s massive federal preschool expansion further entangles Washington in the education and care of the youngest Americans, public demand for new, large-scale government spending on early childhood education and care is not evident. An estimated 74 percent of four-year-old children are already enrolled in public and private preschool throughout the country.

And low-income families already have access to taxpayer-funded preschool through state programs and Head Start. Proof that this is just an attempt to further expand government comes from President Obama’s proposal would subsidize middle-income and upper-income families.

Growing government preschool at any level does not address deeper social issues, such as the crisis of single motherhood, which lie at the heart of the type of poverty that affects Americans today.

But despite these findings, Weber and 62 members of the Assembly voted in support of the resolution to expand California’s role in the lives of children.

12 comments

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  1. Ted Steele, Navigator
    Ted Steele, Navigator 21 May, 2013, 09:29

    Heckfire– We gaal darn Amerikns have plenty uf edjukation. Prt near almost like comminist France. What we reely need is more gunz so’s we can fite for our freedumbs like that good ol George Washington done.

    Reply this comment
  2. Ulysses Uhaul
    Ulysses Uhaul 21 May, 2013, 09:51

    More will only stunt doomers……please….save the money!

    Reply this comment
  3. jimmydeeoc
    jimmydeeoc 21 May, 2013, 10:26

    Weber…..(again!)….where do they get such tools?

    “A child who attends quality early care and education programs is less likely to be arrested…..”

    I went to a year of pre-school prior to Kindergarten in the mid-60s. (I think it was called “Nursery School” back then.) Regardless, I seriously doubt if “potential for future arrest” was anywhere near the top of my parent’s reasons for enrollment.

    I’m not sure exactly what it says about Weber’s world-view, but whatever it is, it’s not good.

    Weber is new to the Assembly, having been elected to the 79th this past November. I expect many more knee-slappers and jaw-droppers from this cement-head in the years to come.

    Reply this comment
  4. us citizen
    us citizen 21 May, 2013, 10:48

    Oh BULL SHIT. This is nothing but dribble again. The only thing to come out of this is that the govt can brain wash our kids at an earlier age. Head Start was a waste of time and money and they still dont get it. Oh lordy, lordy…………..I’m soooooo tired of the crap coming out of govt.

    Reply this comment
  5. Bunker Queen
    Bunker Queen 21 May, 2013, 11:02

    More will only stunt doomers……please….save the money!

    Based on this sentence alone I believe the argument can be made for more education.

    Whatsa matter U (Hahahahahah I made a funny….well the good people who thought up Rocky and Bullwinkle did but who am I to quibble?)….was “May I mambo dogface to the banana patch” was taken?

    Geez TedSLy…can’t you let UU look out your ear hole for a while? He sounds like he could use some air.

    Reply this comment
  6. Ted Steele, Navigator
    Ted Steele, Navigator 21 May, 2013, 13:42

    Your highness, Mr. U has more pure academic talent in his toes than you will ever hope to have. His posts are like literature and yours are like…..well……ah…..teenage tweets.

    Reply this comment
  7. Bunker Queen
    Bunker Queen 21 May, 2013, 15:22

    Mr. U has more pure academic talent in his toes than you will ever hope to have.

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhhahah……..breath……HAHAHAHAHAHAhahahah

    The sad part is that I imagine you are well acquainted with UUs toes. More is the pity.

    Shouldn’t you be out shaking down government?

    Reply this comment
  8. Queeg
    Queeg 21 May, 2013, 16:51

    It is so so so sad that the poodle queen sucks so much nonsense air our of CWD.

    Who cares what the article states…..it is our life misson to beat down nonsense from cubicle workers and truck stop counter help!

    Reply this comment
  9. Ted
    Ted "Eddy Baby" Steele, Associate Prof. 22 May, 2013, 06:42

    Oh My!
    Score another direct hit for the Queegster! ™

    Reply this comment
  10. Bunker Queen
    Bunker Queen 22 May, 2013, 12:05

    …..it is our life misson to beat down nonsense from cubicle workers and truck stop counter help!

    Good thing you have Tedszly as a “life partner” then.

    Reply this comment
  11. Queeg
    Queeg 23 May, 2013, 08:08

    BQ: Pack your best bug out kit well….”they” are overhead……just smile….it will be over soon….white coats are becoming this time of year!

    Reply this comment
  12. Steele, Ted, When only the very best will do!
    Steele, Ted, When only the very best will do! 23 May, 2013, 08:24

    Queeg, I am you and you are me and we are all together.

    Reply this comment

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