The attendance rate was relatively similar between rural and non-rural settings for infants and toddlers. However, these numbers differed significantly for older children. For preschoolers, just 26% of those in non-rural counties were still attending versus 38% in in rural counties. For school-age children in non-rural counties, providers were serving just 12% of their capacity for this age range, compared to 41% for rural providers.
Chris Kerrigan of Trident United Way writes in this morning’s Post and Courier about the importance of investing in education. He also highlights the importance of early childhood investments:
Research demonstrates that family environments are important in determining future educational achievement and skills development. Helpful early interventions, such as in-home parenting programs, can mitigate the effects of under-resourced family environments. In fact, the earlier we invest in a child’s education, the greater benefit that society receives, much like a family that invests early in retirement savings gets the advantage of compounded interest over time.
Quality child care is another important educational necessity that makes it possible for parents to work and have confidence that their children’s learning is being nurtured. High quality early education “increases graduation rates by up to 16 percent – and college attendance by more than 50 percent,” according to a 2011 study by the Partnership for Success.
The full article is available on the Post and Courier’s website.