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Early childhood education is something to celebrate

April 15, 2010

Within the next three years Marshalltown will offer preschool in all of its elementary school buildings.

In its third year as a grant district, Marshalltown Community School District has offered preschool at Hoglan, Franklin and Woodbury - with Rogers beginning its program this fall. Anson and Fisher will follow in coming years.

While early childhood education is vital, it now comes without a pricetag. Marshalltown preschool is tuition-free, meaning a lot of working families that hadn't been able to afford this schooling now have access.

Furthermore, it's a quality education. All teachers are certified in early childhood education and special education. The Iowa Quality Preschool Standards and Iowa Early Learning Standards guide staff in providing developmentally appropriate experiences for children. The schools use a nationally known comprehensive teaching model called Creative Curriculum.

Research offers unarguable evidence that children who participate in a high-quality preschool program exhibit stronger language, math, thinking and social skills. This fall, the preschools along with a partnership program at St. Paul's Preschool, will serve about 240 students.

Assuring all the children in our community an opportunity to succeed in school is of utmost importance - high quality preschools create stronger communities.

Children who attend a quality preschool are:

More likely to become a good reader in elementary school.

Less likely to be placed in special education or held back a grade.

More likely to graduate from high school and attend college.

More likely to earn a higher income.

Less likely to need public assistance as adults.

More likely to lead healthy lives.

Less likely to be arrested or incarcerated.

We applaud the Marshalltown Community School District for broadening its early childhood education availability. We support future plans that are underway to work on providing transportation, playground improvement and coordination with area daycares.

High quality early learning experiences are essential to building a foundation for positive outcomes for children. Continuing to expand these opportunities for all of our youth is crucial.



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