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A Head Start that Lasts a Lifetime

by Emmalie Dropkin
July/August 2016
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/a-head-start-that-lasts-a-lifetime/5023072/

President Lyndon Johnson launched Project Head Start in the summer of 1965. He stated: “We set out to make certain that poverty’s children would not be forevermore poverty’s captives.” It was a lofty goal for a part-day summer program — to intervene briefly in ­children’s lives and change them forever. The spirit of that speech motivated a generation of parents and teachers and community leaders to set Head Start on the course to where it is today. For some of those families, life has been different ever since, and both parents and ­children now have college degrees and success across the board. For other families, the progress they have made toward greater stability and stronger relationships may not be captured by measures of income or diplomas on a wall, and yet they see the benefits of Head Start in their own lives. With those adult effects in mind, we must make sense of the short-term and long-term research on Head Start and draw lessons about how to extend the program’s effects further.

 

Does a Head Start Last?

Research on a narrow set of learning and IQ measures has been done ever since the early years of Head Start, and has found significant gains ...

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