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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:


A Brief History and Overview of the Head Start Program

October 16, 2020

For over 50 years, Head Start has served millions of children and families living in poverty through comprehensive early learning, health, nutrition, and family support services.  This October, as we …


Does Quality Early Childhood Education Lead to More Successful Lives as Adults?

September 30, 2020

The National Academy of Sciences Says “Yes”! The Science Behind It, a project of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), has added a new page to their collection of questions …


Child Trends Brief Advises States on Using A Family-Centered Framework to Guide COVID-19 Response

September 18, 2020

In a new brief, Child Trends discusses how Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) state administrators, policymakers, and researchers can apply the Access Framework to guide policy and funding decisions …


CLASP Report Shows Racial Disparities Impact on Infants and Toddlers of Color

September 17, 2020

Recently, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) released a report titled, A Pandemic within a Pandemic: How Coronavirus and Systemic Racism Are Harming Infants and Toddlers of Color. …


Report Examines Adverse Childhood Experiences in Early Childhood

September 10, 2020

Research shows that young children develop 1 million new neural connections every second making early childhood a crucial for long-term development. Research also finds that children’s social environments play an …


Celebrating the Week of the Young Child!

April 15, 2020

This week, the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is celebrating their annual Week of the Young Child. In the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, this week …


Home Visiting Coalition response to Maternal Health RFI

April 6, 2020

FFYF Comments on Evidence-Based Solutions to Address Poor Maternal Outcomes

April 6, 2020

‘The Brain Architects’: A New Early Childhood Development Podcast

January 9, 2020

The early years of a child’s life are the building blocks on which they will form intellectual, social, and emotional skills to last a lifetime. A new podcast aims to …


New Research Demonstrates the Importance of Early Learning — and What Comes After

November 19, 2019

In addition to the proven life-long benefits, the overwhelming research shows that children living in poverty who experience quality early childhood education programs are more prepared for school, both behaviorally …


Celebrating STEM Education for Early Learners

November 8, 2019

Today, on National STEM Day, we commend bipartisan work being done in congress to promote STEM education for children of all ages. One bill in particular, the ‘Building Blocks of …


‘All Our Kin’ Highlights the Important Work of Family Child Care Providers

October 31, 2019

Children can have a high-quality early childhood experience in any number of settings, whether it’s a classroom, a church basement, or like a majority of children in child care today, …

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