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Evidence on the Early Years

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  1. Evidence on the Early Years Ian Storrie COSLA March 2010

  2. Evidence on Early Years • Teaching grandmother to suck eggs

  3. Evidence on Early Years • Teaching grandmother to suck eggs is a saying, meaning that a person is giving advice to someone else about a subject that they already know about (and probably more than the first person) • Cannot afford to assume that Granny already knows

  4. Reasons to Intervene • Moral Imperative

  5. Reasons to Intervene • “The crucial importance of the first five years in a child’s development is well recognised” p45 • “The active interest of parents in their children’s education is associated with higher measured attainment.” p46 • “Being disadvantaged does not of itself explain why children do less well.” p53 • “......when arguing for a curriculum appropriate to a child’s community, teachers need to be sensitive to the social and moral climate in which their children are growing up.” p57 • To achieve a community-oriented curriculum..”..it could take years and will require a generous and sympathetic change of heart, not only among educational authorities but in society at large.” p57

  6. Born to Fail - 1973 • “The crucial importance of the first five years in a child’s development is well recognised” p45 • “The active interest of parents in their children’s education is associated with higher measured attainment.” p46 • “Being disadvantaged does not of itself explain why children do less well.” p53 • “......when arguing for a curriculum appropriate to a child’s community, teachers need to be sensitive to the social and moral climate in which their children are growing up.” p57 • To achieve a community-oriented curriculum..”..it could take years and will require a generous and sympathetic change of heart, not only among educational authorities but in society at large.” p57

  7. Reasons to Intervene • Moral Imperative – Not enough? • Science • 1972 Dunedin, New Zealand

  8. Dunedin Experiment (Not the real name) • 1,000 3 year old children observed over 90 minutes by nurses • The nurses identified an ‘at risk’ group based upon • Restlessness • Negativity • Lack of persistence and attention

  9. Dunedin - @21 • 47% abused their partners, compared with 10% of the control group • Three times as many antisocial personalities • 2.5 times as many had two or more criminal convictions • 55% of the offences were violent compared with 18% • 30% of the at risk women had teenage pregnancies compared with zero.

  10. Reasons to Intervene • Moral Imperative – Not enough? • Science • 1972 Dunedin, New Zealand • Dr Bruce Perry

  11. Bruce Perry – Brain Development Physical connections between neurons – synaptic connections - increase and strengthen through repetition or wither through disuse...early life experiences, therefore, determine how genetic potential is expressed, or not... During the first years of life, the higher parts of the brain become organised and more functionally capable. Brain growth and development is profoundly “front loaded” such that, by age four, a child’s brain is 90% adult size. This time of great opportunity is a biological gift.

  12. Bruce Perry – Brain Development Physical connections between neurons – synaptic connections - increase and strengthen through repetition or wither through disuse...early life experiences, therefore, determine how genetic potential is expressed, or not... During the first years of life, the higher parts of the brain become organised and more functionally capable.Brain growth and development is profoundly “front loaded” such that, by age four, a child’s brain is 90% adult size.This time of great opportunity is a biological gift.

  13. Bruce Perry – Brain Development Source:The Margaret McCain lectures series, Inaugural lecture by Bruce D. Perry, Maltreatment and the Developing Child, 2004

  14. Schools and teachers are important but our parents, and what happens before we reach school, are more significant. It is estimated that by the age of three, 50% of our language is in place. At five, it’s 85%. Language is either there or missing by the time a child starts primary school. And once a child starts primary school, they are only there for 15% of their time. Source: Wishart R, Herald, 13 June 2006

  15. Reasons to Intervene • Moral Imperative – Not enough? • Science • 1972 Dunedin, New Zealand • Dr Bruce Perry • Economics • James Heckman

  16. Rates of Return to Human Capital Investment at Different Ages: Return to an Extra Dollar at Various Ages Rate of return to investment in human capital Programs targeted towards the earliest years Preschool programs Schooling Job training 0-3 4-5 Post-school School Preschool 0 Age 8/27/2014 16

  17. The pattern of public spending on education over the life cycle, 2002/3 Source: Alakeson V, Too Much, Too Late: Life chances and spending on education and training, Social Market Foundation 2005

  18. The economic returns to early investments are high. They promote efficiency and reduce inequality. The returns to later interventions are much lower. Skill begets skill and early skill makes later skill acquisition easier. Remedial programs in the adolescent and young adult years are much more costly in producing the same level of skill attainment in adulthood. Children from advantaged environments by and large receive substantial early investment. Children from disadvantaged environments more often do not. There is a strong case for public support for funding interventions in early childhood for disadvantaged children. Yet Social market Foundation finds we spend the opposite Heckman Summary 8/27/2014 18

  19. Reasons to Intervene • Moral Imperative – Not enough? • Science • 1972 Dunedin, New Zealand • Dr Bruce Perry • Economics • James Heckman • Perry Pre-School

  20. Perry Pre-School Programme • 1962 Inner City Chicago • Three year olds – 2 year programme • Pre-School 5 ½ days a week • 1 ½ hour weekly home visit • Then nothing • 123 children • 58 intervention • 65 no pre-school • Followed up 3-11, then 14, 15, 19, 27 and 40

  21. Perry Preschool ProgramIQ, by age and treatment group 8/27/2014 21

  22. Perry Preschool ProgramEducational effects, by treatment group 8/27/2014 22

  23. Perry Preschool ProgramEconomic effects at age 27, by treatment group 8/27/2014 23

  24. Perry Preschool ProgramArrests per person before age 40, by treatmentgroup 8/27/2014 24

  25. Perry Preschool ProgramIQ, by age and treatment group 8/27/2014 25

  26. Sources of ‘Ammunition’ • GUS – Growing Up in Scotland • EPPE – Effective Provision of Pre-School Education • 0-5: How Small Children Make a Big Difference • Early Years Framework Evidence Papers

  27. Some Hyperlinks • http://www.crfr.ac.uk/gus/ • http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/everychildmatters/research/keyresearch/earlyyearschildcare0910/eppe/eppe/ • http://www.theworkfoundation.com/research/publications/publicationdetail.aspx?oItemId=26 • http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2008/06/evidence