His groundbreaking work with a consortium of economists, psychologists, statisticians and neuroscientists has shown that early childhood development directly influences economic, health and social outcomes for individuals and society.
"The families of at-risk children lack the resources to provide the early developmental stimulation that is so helpful for success in school, college, career and life. Poor health, dropout rates, poverty and crime –
can address these problems and substantially reduce their costs to taxpayers by investing in developmental opportunities for at-risk children."
, a PACE member and prominent educator in
, "High-quality education is the way out of poverty." Singer, president of Para Los Ninos, a
-based child services agency and charter school operator, says that neglecting early childhood education while continuing to fund the state's robust juvenile detention and prison systems is "the classic mistake of penny-wise and pound-foolish."
Benefits of Early Childhood Education
- For every dollar spent on high-quality early childhood education, society at large saves $4 to $17 by reducing the need for special education programs and welfare, by cutting crime and by reducing grade retention.
- Every dollar spent on subsidizing child care results in a savings of $2.17 for the overall economy.
- Improved academic success for children through higher test scores and better attendance.
- Increased rates of high school completion and college attendance, resulting in greater earnings potential for students and a seven-fold reduction in the likelihood of ending up in the criminal justice system.
PACE backs "yes" on Propositions 30 and 38 as the best way to avoid further catastrophic cuts to vital education programs. Says Halasz: "By voting for both propositions, you help ensure that at least one of them will go into effect, avoiding devastating cuts to the entire
Proposition 30 would increase income taxes by 1 to 3 percent on those earning
per year or more, as well as add ¼ cent to the state sales tax. Proposition 38 would increase income taxes by between .04 percent (at an income of
a year) and 2.2% (at
a year). Tax credits will shelter many lower-income taxpayers from any increase. Both propositions fund education, but Proposition 38 is the only one to spell out how much would go to early childhood education. Both propositions provide for public accounting, annual audits and no money spent for administrative costs.
Support for Propositions 30 and 38 is "more than a fiscal issue," says Halasz. "Education is every child's birthright, and this is about giving them a head start. It's morally right to give these children a chance."