Benefits of High Quality Child Care Persist 30 Years Later

Date Published: 01/19/2012

Adults who participated in a high quality early childhood education program in the 1970s are still benefitting from their early experiences in a variety of ways, according to a new study published in the journal Developmental Psychology. The study provides new data from the long-running, highly regarded Abecedarian Project, which is led by researchers at FPG. Researchers have followed participants from early childhood through adolescence and young adulthood, generating a comprehensive and rare set of longitudinal data.

According to the latest study of adults at age 30, Abecedarian Project participants had significantly more years of education than peers who were part of a control group and they were four times more likely to have earned college degrees. Other benefits included that participants were more likely to have been consistently employed and less likely to have used public assistance. They also showed a tendency to delay parenthood by almost two years compared to the control group. Participants appeared to have done better in relation to several other social and economic measures (including higher incomes), but those results were not statistically significant.

For more information about the study, see Carolina Abecedarian Project.

To read press coverage of the latest results, see:

Study Lauds Role of Early Ed (The News & Observer, Raleigh, NC)

A Leg Up (The News & Observer, Raleigh, NC)

Full News Story: UNC News Services