Friday, June 10, 2005
Olsen:if the gains of these programs are realizable, if thereGetting that message across to K-12 educators is vital, but given the continued push for universal, cookie-cutter E-12 programs, there's no sign that the message is being received.
really is potential for these preschool combination parenting and mentoring programs to have a lasting impact on children, it is absolutely imperative that the schools they enter can sustain and build on those gains. Right now, we have a system where that is not happening. We have too many schools that are inadequate and I think that explains quite a bit of the "fade out" phenomenon. The problem may not be that the preschool programs are not good, but rather that the schools that children enter are not able to sustain those gains.
Rolnick: The research is clear: if you do a great job at getting at-risk kids ready for kindergarten and they go to dysfunctional schools, you lose all these benefits. You need some leverage in making these K-12 schools, especially in the inner city, responsive and accountable, and you�ve got to get the results.
UPDATE: Minnesota Education Reform News has some additional thoughts, and finds Olsen to have the more persuasive arguments.