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New Arizona Study Finds Big Benefits to Early Childhood Education Investment

The Arizona Daily Wildcat recently reported the finding of the Arizona Child Care Demand Study. The report confirmed what many advocates of early childhood education around the country already know: the investment pays off big time for society as a whole.

According the study, commissioned by First Things First, the study demonstrated “how urgent the need is for better early care and education options for Arizona’s families.”

The study incorporated more than 1,300 interviews from Arizona parents with children not yet in kindergarten and younger than 6 years old.

“Most families appear to do what’s called a network … ‘One day he goes to Aunt Edis. The next day I stay with him until I go to class and then my mom comes over and stays with him while I’m in class and then when my dad gets home, he takes care of him until I get out of class,’” said Mary McLellan, a Northern Arizona University professor and co-principal investigator for the study. “There’s this network that they use that can be very, very complicated, but they kind of make it work.”

“A number of rigorous, large-scale research studies have shown that over time, public investments in early care and education pay off many times over in the form of lower special education costs, lower crime rates, lower welfare enrollments, increased worker productivity and higher tax revenue,” according to the report.

Read more about the report here.