Importance of Being Educated
Why is Early Childhood Education Important
Before we can understand the importance of early childhood education, we should be on the same page about what age early childhood education refers to. Typically, early childhood education encompasses any education a child receives up until the age of eight, or around third grade.
During these initial years of life, children’s brains are growing and learning at a rapid rate, and learning typically comes very easy to them. The purpose of education at this stage is to build a solid foundation for children to build upon for the rest of their lives.
When looking at pre-school, one of the earliest educational opportunities, a meta-analysis of studies on the benefits of early childhood education found that “7–8 of every 10 preschool children did better than the average child in a control or comparison group” when looking at standard measures of intelligence and academic achievement. This makes sense, given that education in those early years sets children up for success.
Another study followed a group of students who were given early high-quality education and compared them to a control group. Years later, the students who were given a high-quality education performed better than the other students in many areas, both academically and socially. These students:
- Scored higher on standardized testing
- Had higher attendance rates
- Had fewer discipline referrals
- Were rated higher by their teachers in terms of behaviours, social interactions, and emotional maturity.
The better foundation they have from an early age, the more likely students are to find success and not get frustrated. When students struggle due to poor early childhood education, the more likely they are to give up. A solid foundation is protective against falling behind, which is imperative, because once students begin to fall behind, it becomes very hard to catch back up.
In addition to the obvious benefits to each child, multiple studies have also shown that early childhood education programs provide an economic benefit to society as well.
In an article from the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, the authors Arthur J. Rolnick and Rob Grunewald write, “Investment in human capital breeds economic success not only for those being educated, but also for the overall economy.” Ref from: Why is Education Important and What is the Purpose of Education (educationcorner.com)