Research

Learning from preschool

A UNC School of Education study found that pre-K programs not only work, but point to ways to build on early educational gains.

The first year of the study found consistent positive effects on language and literacy skills at the end of preschool. (Adobe stock image)
The first year of the study found consistent positive effects on language and literacy skills at the end of preschool. (Adobe stock image)

Preschool works.

The experiences of children in early childhood learning settings are among the most-studied aspects in the field of educational research. It’s clear: Children who attend high-quality early childhood programs experience academic growth on a variety of measures, compared to children who do not attend pre-kindergarten programs.

But the studies have also uncovered disparities and have pointed to areas in which educators can improve early childhood programs.

Ellen Peisner-Feinberg, a senior research scientist and research professor at the UNC School of Education, has led many of the studies that have contributed to understanding of the benefits — and the challenges — of early childhood programs.

Read about Peisner-Feinberg’s study of how to build on the benefits preschool provides.