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US Trails Behind In Early Childhood Education

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By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - A recent report from the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development released results that rank the US 28th out of 38 countries for the share of 4-year-olds enrolled in pre-primary education programs.

At 69%, we compare poorly with France, the Netherlands, Spain, and Mexico which leads the world with more than 95% participation. While the report acknowledges improvement in recent years, the US invests less money than their counterparts in the Group of Twenty, the G-20 economies, which include 19 nations and the European Union.

The average for all countries is 84% of students enrolled in public or private settings that receive major government resources. In the US only 55% of preschool students were enrolled in publicly supported programs in 2010 and 45% in independent private programs.

With many studies showing that quality early education is a key to preparing students for later academic success, as a nation we must do better.

Read about other findings in the report in Education Week.

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