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Want To Make America Great Again? Make Our Kids Globally Competitive

The Huffington Post – Ajay Chaudry and Hirokazu Yoshikawa

“The American economy faces some significant challenges in the 21st Century. That is certain. Trump’s diagnosis repeated again and again on the campaign trail —America has lost its competitive edge in the global economy— took hold, but this rhetoric failed to identify one of the root causes and advanced the wrong approach for a more prosperous future. Half of American children today are not equipped to be successful in the world economy when they grow up, compared to peer countries that reach 100 percent with comprehensive early childhood development policies. A large number of countries have integrated early childhood policies for children from prenatal to school entry, across health, nutrition, and education. The United States is richer than all of these but lacks a coordinated approach, and fails to invest in these critical services which pay off long-term benefits.”(more)

Closing the pre-K math education gap for Latino students

District Administration – Steven Wyman-Blackburn

“When beginning kindergarten, Latino students are three months behind in math literacy when compared to their white peers, says a 2017 study conducted by Child Trends, a nonprofit research organization that works to improve the lives children and families. The study, “Making Math Count More for Young Latino Children,” cites poverty in Latino households as a cause, and says these young students will fall farther behind if the problem isn’t addressed in the classroom.”(more)

Pre-kindergarten effects – what the science says

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“How well are we preparing young children to enter kindergarten ready to learn? Educators in K-12 school systems are faced with wide disparities in skill levels of entering kindergarteners, which means many children are already far behind many of their peers. Findings in developmental science point toward the importance of early-life experiences in shaping brain development. These findings suggest that if we knew how to provide these experiences in our early education programs, we could have a lifelong impact on children’s success. The good news, according to numerous studies, is that children attending publicly funded pre-kindergarten programs are better prepared for kindergarten than similar children who have not attended pre-k.”(more)

Researchers find strong link between fast-food ads and consumption among pre-schoolers

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“Pre-school age children who are exposed to child-targeted fast-food advertising on television are considerably more likely to consume fast-food products, according to a recent Dartmouth-led study published in the journal Public Health Nutrition. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the greatest exposure to food advertising in the US for children aged 2-11 years comes from fast-food restaurant chains. In 2009, the fast-food industry spent more than $580 million on child-targeted marketing, with television being the predominant medium.”(more)

Protecting early childhood education helps national security

Commercial Appeal – Vinson E. Smith

“The next time you drop your child off to preschool, or spot a gaggle of four year olds on a playground, you should think about national security. Yes, you read that correctly, because a lot of what happens in a four year old’s mind right now will have a big impact on his or her ability to qualify for military service or employment later in life.”(more)

Kids are better readers than they were more than a decade ago

USA Today – Sean Rossman

“First graders nowadays are better readers than they were more than a decade ago, evidence, researchers said, kids are learning in kindergarten what they used to in first grade. That’s according to a 12-year study out of Ohio State University, which found students entering first grade in 2013 had “significantly better reading skills” than the same age group 12 years earlier.”(more)