Does one more year in kindergarten matter?

Best Evidence in Brief Index

By Winnie Tam, Centre for University and School Partnership, The Chinese University of Hong Kong

In 2009, the China Development Research Foundation of the State Council launched the One Village One Preschool (OVOP) initiative, with the goal of providing free early childhood education (ECE) access to all young children across China. According to statistics in 2017, almost all children (98%) in urban areas have access to ECE while only 30% of children from poor and rural areas have the same access. OVOP includes the facilities, teaching components, and policy and organizational operations, through which children of a village can access preschool education without spending hours of commuting time. Using students’ data during the years 2015 to 2018 from Songtao county in Guizhou, one of the poorest provinces in China, Chen and colleagues explored the effect of an ECE education experience on academic performance in grade 1 to grade 4. Five…

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