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Lifelong Gains

Investing in early childhood education creates upward mobility by providing all children with a solid foundation for long-term success in life. These benefits do not end with one child but extend to their entire families and communities in the years to come. 

Here are five things to know about child care and lifelong gains.

  1. Studies show that access to quality early learning programs can reduce educational and opportunity gaps between children from low and high-income families at kindergarten entry. Kindergarten readiness is a key predictor of a child’s long-term academic success.
  2. Children participating in high-quality early learning programs have higher graduation rates. Attending early learning programs is linked to a 6% increase in high school graduation and a 5.5% increase in attendance at a four-year college. 
  3. Adults who had quality early childhood education as children are more likely to be employed full-time, own a home, and have a savings account.
  4. Adults who participated in high-quality early education programs as children, like Head Start saw long-term health benefits, including reduced rates of depression, alcohol and tobacco use, and cardiovascular disease.
  5. Research shows that Head Start improves the parenting practices of parents while their child is attending the program, as well as their own children decades later. Supportive parental involvement contributes to a child’s long term success in school and life.

Learn more:


Study Finds Quality Child Care Supports Long-Term STEM Outcomes

March 28, 2024

It’s no secret that a child’s early years influence the rest of their lives. Research has shown time and time again the long-term benefits that high-quality early care and education …


ZERO TO THREE Releases State of Babies 2023 Yearbook

October 3, 2023

ZERO TO THREE recently released the State of Babies Yearbook: 2023, an in-depth report on how state and federal policies have impacted the lives of families and their young babies. …


Lack of Access to Child Care Impacts Child Well-Being

August 8, 2023

Earlier this summer, the Annie E. Casey Foundation released their annual KIDS COUNT® Data Book, which has been measuring child well-being at the state level since 1990. The report ranks …


MIECHV: Overview

March 2, 2023

The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program provides federal funds to states, territories, and tribal entities for voluntary, evidence-based home visiting services. 


Head Start and Early Head Start: The Program Overview

March 1, 2023

Head Start is a federally funded program that delivers comprehensive early learning, health, nutrition, and family support services to children ages 3 through 5 experiencing  poverty and their families.

Little girl sitting at table coloring.

Study Shows ECE Improves Long-Term Outcomes

December 16, 2022

A new longitudinal study, “Kindergarten through Grade 3 Outcomes Associated with Participation in High-Quality Early Care and Education: A RCT Follow-Up Study”, found that high-quality early care and education (ECE) …


The Necessity of MIECHV Reauthorization: Economic Benefit

September 28, 2022

The fourth and final part of FFYF’s blog series on the necessity of MIECHV reauthorization focuses on economic impacts. Given the evidence demonstrating the effectiveness of MIECHV, the program presents …


Congressional Briefing Highlights New Research on Early Head Start’s Impacts

September 23, 2022

On Wednesday, the National Head Start Association (NHSA) and the bipartisan Congressional Pre-K & Child Care Caucus hosted a briefing entitled “The Child and Family Impacts of Early Head Start …


The Necessity of MIECHV Reauthorization: Parents’ Benefit

September 21, 2022

As the third part of FFYF’s blog series on the importance of MIECHV reauthorization, this blog focuses on the many ways in which parents benefit from home visiting programs.  Home …


FFYF Statement on Bipartisan Introduction of The Jackie Walorski Maternal and Child Home Visiting Reauthorization Act of 2022

September 20, 2022

WASHINGTON – Today, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) and Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-TX), alongside Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Ranking Member Cathy …


The Necessity of MIECHV Reauthorization: Children Benefit

September 14, 2022

As the second part of FFYF’s blog series on the necessity of MIECHV reauthorization, this blog focuses on the ways in which children benefit from home visiting programs. The birth …


The Necessity of MIECHV Reauthorization

September 7, 2022

The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program is a voluntary, evidence-based program within the Health Resources and Services Administration at the Department of Health and Human Services …

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