The Real Reason Why Biden Wants to Spend Billions on Pre-K

During his State of the Union Address, President Biden rebranded the failed Build Back Better bill as his bill that would cut inflation, grow the economy, lower costs, and lower deficits.  Then he added that his plan would include universal -- free -- “Pre-K for every 3- and 4-year-old.”

This is appealing to families struggling with high daycare costs so they can work.  Others wrongly believe that children need to be in formal school as early as possible.  Few Americans realize that government control over the rearing and education of young children is a key communist goal for turning our nation toward totalitarianism. 

To quote Vladimir Lenin, Russian revolutionary and founding head of the Soviet Union, “Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.”

Not only is government pre-K an opportunity to indoctrinate children in socialism at an early age but there are long-term negative outcomes that imperil our nation.

For years Democrats have been trying to get a universal pre-K program funded.  Now proponents are in a tailspin over the recent study by Vanderbilt University researchers on the Tennessee statewide voluntary pre-K program for low-income students.

The Tennessee researchers found that children who did not attend the program fared better down the road academically and behaviorally.  By the end of sixth grade, when compared with children who had not attended the program, children in the study were more likely to be referred to special education services, more likely to have discipline issues, and graduates of the state program performed worse on state academic tests.

This is consistent with more than 60 years of research on the merits of public early childcare.  Contrary to what many believe, research shows that early formal schooling destroys a child’s learning ability and can even be detrimental to the behavioral development of mainstream children.

Despite the claim that 85 percent of a child’s brain development occurs in the first five years, pediatricians say the brain continues to develop, remodel and refine until age 25. Because early elementary school children are in their major development years, with good K-3 reading teachers they are able to learn four times as much material during a regular school year as in the preschool years.  Although some believe that children need to begin reading at an early age, there are no long-term gains from teaching children to read at age five compared to age seven. 

Nearly every study over the past 60 years has reported a fadeout of benefits from kindergarten to third grade. Head Start studies have consistently reported fadeout.

For more than 60 years, studies by the federal government reported that Head Start does not improve the school readiness of low-income children. Other major studies report that public pre-K has not narrowed the gap for low-income children.

The findings of major studies show students who do not enroll in public pre-K outperform those who attend.  Oklahoma universal pre-K program students scored above the 1992 NAEP national average but fell below it in 2015.

American creativity scores have been steadily falling since 1990. Distinct types of free play in early childhood are associated with high creativity.  Low creativity scores have profound implications for America’s economic growth and national and international matters requiring creative solutions.

A 2018 study by Harvard Medical School researchers reports that the rate of ADHD diagnoses among children has risen dramatically over the past 20 years, with approximately one-third occurring in children under six.  Play-based kindergartens and preschools have been replaced largely by daily drilling of literacy and math skills and giving/preparing for tests.  Although they learn best by free play, young children are being forced into formal instruction and sitting for long periods.

Numerous studies report pre-K students develop long-term negative social and emotional problems.  An NICHD study found children who spent more time in non-maternal childcare showed more behavioral problems than children who spent less time. An Ohio University study found daycare children had more behavioral problems than those under parental care while a Stanford study reported preschool children showing more aggression, bullying, and lack of control.  The High/Scope Preschool Curriculum Comparison Study found that, by age 23, the formal instruction students showed serious issues in overall development including felony offenses, work, and marital problems.  The Ohio study found more aggressive behavior, including fighting, arguing, expressing anger, acting impulsively, and disturbing classroom activity.  The Quebec study found at older ages, there was worsened health and life satisfaction and increased rates of criminal activity, especially in males.

Public pre-K is now controlled by the federal government through the Every Student Succeeds Act which requires alignment to Head Start and Child Development Block Grants that are tied to national preschool standards (Common Core for Tots) and psychosocial standards.

Having government control over the education of all toddlers will ensure more students are dumbed down, dysfunctional individuals programmed to live in an authoritarian society. 

If we are to keep America a free and literate nation, parents need to rethink placing their children in government pre-K or in any government school, for that matter.

Carole Hornsby Haynes, Education Policy Analyst/Curriculum Specialist.  www.drcarolehhaynes.com  chaynes@drcarolehhaynes.com

Image: Governor Tom Wolf

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