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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.

Source: First Five Years Fund (n.d.) Lifelong Gains.