Nine states will get a chance to jump-start their early childhood initiatives, thanks to $500 million in federal grant money. The funds are available through the U.S. Department of Education's program, Race to the Top. In this initiative, states compete for federal dollars to create programs that make schools more effective. The $500 million will be shared by the following states:
- North Carolina
- Rhode Island
A long-term study by the Chicago Public Schools found that "children who attended a high quality early childhood program were more likely to graduate from high school, more likely to stay out of jail and less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol than students who did not attend such a program."
Sources: The Associated Press, Chicago Tribune