Does Prekindergarten Improve School Preparation and Performance?

46 Pages Posted: 11 May 2004 Last revised: 25 Jul 2010

See all articles by Katherine A. Magnuson

Katherine A. Magnuson

Columbia University - School of Social Work

Christopher J. Ruhm

University of Virginia - Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Jane Waldfogel

Columbia University - School of Social Work

Date Written: April 2004

Abstract

Prekindergarten programs are expanding rapidly, but to date, evidence on their effects is quite limited. Using rich data from Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, we estimate the effects of prekindergarten on children's school readiness. We find that prekindergarten increases reading and mathematics skills at school entry, but also increases behavioral problems and reduces self-control. Furthermore, the effects of prekindergarten on skills largely dissipate by the spring of first grade, although the behavioral effects do not. Finally, effects differ depending on children's family background and subsequent schooling, with the largest and most lasting academic gains for disadvantaged children and those attending schools with low levels of academic instruction.

Suggested Citation

Magnuson, Katherine A. and Ruhm, Christopher J. and Waldfogel, Jane, Does Prekindergarten Improve School Preparation and Performance? (April 2004). NBER Working Paper No. w10452, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=538442

Katherine A. Magnuson

Columbia University - School of Social Work ( email )

622 W. 113th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States

Christopher J. Ruhm (Contact Author)

University of Virginia - Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy ( email )

235 McCormick Rd.
P.O. Box 400893
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4893
United States
434-924-7581 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://batten.virginia.edu/cruhm.html

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Jane Waldfogel

Columbia University - School of Social Work ( email )

622 W. 113th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
130
Abstract Views
3,106
rank
265,261
PlumX Metrics