Closing the achievement gap

A lot of things contribute to the achievement gap among kids entering kindergarten, poverty being the leading factor. But two things stand to narrow, even close, that gap: quality child care and Parents as Teachers.

A study by Eric Dearing, associate professor at Boston College’s Lynch School of Education, shows that for children in poverty, high-quality child care during the first five years of life that can do much to offset the effects of poor home environments, helping them establish the foundation for good school skills that last at least up to the fifth grade.

But according to research on more than 7,000 Missouri kindergartners by Dr. Edward Zigler of Yale University, adding the support of Parents as Teachers raises the bar even higher. Zigler’s research, published in the Journal of Primary Prevention, showed the best gains were made by children who experienced quality child care in combination with Parents as Teachers participation.

All parents want the best for their children. All parents struggle sometimes. All kids deserve the same opportunities to succeed. Parents as Teachers provides that extra support to help close the achievement gap at kindergarten.