of pre-school age children in high-poverty neighborhoods do not have access to public preschool

Children from low-income households who receive early childhood education with parental involvement have better educational outcomes and employment prospects, and lower rates of arrests and incarceration.

Early childhood education program targeted to families of at-risk children, usually consisting of half-day preschool with a focus on parental involvement. Parents must spend 3-5 hours per week either volunteering in school or classroom activities, or actively engaging in their child’s educational activities at home.

We model Child-Parent Centers as a one year program for four-year-old children. 

Eligibility is limited to families with household income below 185% of the federal poverty line, which is the level at which children are eligible for free school lunches.

There are approximately 13,128 four-year-olds from high poverty neighborhoods in Alabama.

For an initial startup cost of $13.3 million and an $86.6 million annual investment covering 13,128 low-income children per year ($6,600 per child). These results would be expected if the program was implemented for one cohort of 13,128 low-income children.

We use a variety of data sources to tailor our analysis to the location and to make our estimates as accurate as possible. However, sometimes data is unavailable, either because it has not been collected, or because it is not shared publicly. We encourage government agencies and other organizations to share their de-identified data online and researchers to prioritize the following gaps in the data.

Poverty and enrollment: Poverty and enrollment statistics are available for the state of Alabama, but there is no specific data on exactly how many low-income families have children who are not currently enrolled in an early childhood education program. We estimate the number of eligible children by subtracting the number of children enrolled in public early childhood education programs from the number of children from low-income families on a county level basis.

Baseline rates of mental health and substance abuse: Research indicates that children from very low income households will have higher baseline rates of depression and substance abuse. However, the precise relationship between these two variables has not been quantified. Therefore we use population-wide rates as our baseline.