A Summary of Early Education Studies

Do high-quality early education programs positively impact children’s cognitive, social, and emotional development? Do these programs affect cognitive, social, and educational outcomes long-term? Do immediate positive effects “fade-out” by third grade? For many years, researchers have tried to answer these questions- with contradictory results at times.

In response, the National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) recently analyzed 123 early education studies that have been conducted over the past five decades. This meta-analysis compared results and found that overall, the research showed significant positive cognitive, social, emotional, and school progress benefits for children who attended high-quality early education programs. Researchers completing the meta-analysis also found substantial positive effects on educational achievement, special education, grade retention, and social behavior at ages 10 and higher for the same children. Read more about the study here or watch researcher W. Steven Barnett discuss the results in a video.

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