Early childhood education has important effects on the academic readiness and ultimate life chances of children. This column examines how the introduction of the educational television show Sesame Street in the US affected primary school outcomes for disadvantaged children. Those from counties that had better access to the broadcast had superior educational outcomes through their early school years. These effects were particularly pronounced for black, non-Hispanic children, and those living in economically disadvantaged areas. The extremely low cost per child of such interventions make them ideal for addressing educational inequality in childhood.
Melissa S. Kearney, Phillip B. Levine, Thursday, July 16, 2015 - 00:00
Manudeep Bhuller, Magne Mogstad, Kjell G. Salvanes, Monday, September 22, 2014 - 00:00
Fabrice Murtin, Martina Viarengo , Friday, January 18, 2013 - 00:00
A workforce’s cognitive skills and ability to learn are regarded as crucial factors for countries hoping to develop and become competitive in the global knowledge economy. This column argues that many developing countries‘ basic educational attainment and learning outcomes remain wanting. Taking a look at Europe’s historical record can shed light on the developing-country context, and evidence suggests that simply expanding an ill-functioning educational system will be wasteful. It’s advisable for policymakers to pursue institutional reform aimed at cost-efficiency before they begin implementing school reforms.