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Early Childhood Proposals, Realistic and Otherwise

On Monday, Sen. Clinton came out with a $10 billion early childhood proposal that (Clinton Pushes Pre - Kindergarten Proposal). Apparently designed by Catherine Brown and Jake Sullivan on the Clinton domestic team, it looks pretty vanilla to me, but wins a speedy approval from the Ed Sector's Sara Mead, who says about the Clinton plan that it is "right on the merits and also plays well politically." Oh, goody.

Over at Early Stories, Richard Colvin takes a slightly broader look around, pointing out that neither Clinton nor the Ed Sector are alone in the early childhood space (New America, Obama, and Pelosi are others), that there are complicated politics to expanding the federal role in early childhood (ie, Head Start), and that the Clinton plan includes some unaddressed and unrealistic elements (ie, college-educated teachers in early childhood classrooms).

For some early childhood ideas that are more closely connected to existing legislation and that have some more realistic ideas for where to get the money, check out New America's event and new paper on early childhood, also released today. And I'm not just saying that because I did some editing work on it. The event includes tasty new comments from Mead, Sullivan, and Bel Sawhill.

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I think early childhood education is very important. I would prefer to see parents prepare their own children at home before they enter kindergarten, but if that does not happen, then the local school districts need to be proactive and provide some good programs to help out those students. It is important that the programs that are provided are research based.

Good point. We need to provide good program for students before they enter kindergarten.

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