I stumbled upon this article today during a homework break. As the title suggests, this article discusses whether earlier kindergarten could be the solution to the achievement gap in our schools. The idea is that programs, specifically aimed poorer families, that start as early as ages three and four touch on subjects such as English and math. Those in favor of such programs argue that since children from poorer families display a knowledge gap starting at age three, such programs could close this gap. They turn to evidence of studies that show that disadvantaged children who attended preschool have better literacy, language, math, and science skills. Others argue that such programs don’t work and that preschool programs are a failure. Those who believe this draw from studies that show that whatever advances were made from early preschool programs, such as Head Start, are lost by third grade.
What are your thoughts on starting kindergarten earlier in hopes to close the achievement gap? What other solutions might help close this gap?