Pre-K Study Shows Program Benefits
Georgia’s pre-kindergarten program seems to be yielding good results. Early reports from a first-of-its kind study show pre-K students are making gains. Researchers from the University of North Carolina followed 500 Georgia pre-K students during the 2011-2012 school year.
Bobby Cagle, the commissioner of Georgia’s Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL), says students were tested in a range of subjects at the beginning and end of the year.
“The results showed significant gains in all of the areas and indicated that many of the children moved from below the national average in that particular test to above the national average after the test,” Cagle says.
The study was launched at the request of state lawmakers two years ago. Cagle says they had questions about the sustainability of the lottery-funded program.
“They asked at the time, ‘What are we getting for our money? Is this an effective program?’" he says, "So, those are the questions we set out to answer and I think we have done that.”
There are currently 84,000 children enrolled in Georgia pre-K programs.