"The first five years have so much to do with how the next 80 turn out." - Bill Gates
South Dakota needs public support to help at- risk children close the Education Gap commonly experienced by children living in poverty. SD for Children wants to provide more access to PreK programs for those children who most need it, and whose parents cannot afford to pay for PreK.
In South Dakota, 74% of parents of children ages 0-5 are both in the workforce. This means the demand for high-quality preschool is great, yet we have areas that have little or no preschool and/or daycare available. SD families need your help to stay in the workforce.
South Dakota is one of five states who provide no funding for PreK. Our goal is to raise money through the SDAEYC Endowment Fund (within SD Community Foundation). Earnings from this account will provide access to quality preschool for under-privileged children.
Studies show that the return on investment for education is greatest during the preschool years. According to Nobel Laureate James J. Heckman, quality programs for disadvantaged children can deliver a 13% per year return on investment. Research has found that when tested at ages 8,10, and 14, children from disadvantaged backgrounds who were enrolled in quality pre-kindergarten programs achieved at higher levels than those who weren't. Former preschool students graduate from high school at significantly higher rates than non-participants and they earn more in later life.
Specifically, children who are enrolled in quality preschool programs are less likely to spend time in special education classes, drop out of school, get in trouble with the law, and go on welfare. More information at Rand Corporation.
Our children are our future, they should be our priority.