What does preschool have to do with crime prevention?
Preschool education has been headline news since the president’s State of the Union address Tuesday night. In his speech, President Obama said, “Every dollar we invest in high-quality early childhood education can save more than seven dollars later on—by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy, even reducing violent crime.”
Last summer CBKB interviewed Dr. Sara Watson, executive vice president of America’s Promise Alliance and the director and cofounder of ReadyNation, a collaboration of business leaders, economists, and philanthropists that enlists business leaders to support early childhood policies and programs. For a discussion with Dr. Watson about early childhood programs, returns on investment, and long-term benefits, see Part 1 of the interview. Part 2 addresses the relationship between early childhood development and crime prevention, the costs and benefits associated with early childhood programs, the challenge of monetizing some of those benefits, and the ramifications when program benefits are diffused among many government agencies and other stakeholders.
To delve deeper into the cost-benefit issues surrounding preschool, check the CBKB reference database, which has more than 500 cost-benefit reports and papers, including dozens about early childhood education.