In 2001, Councilman Kevin Chavous proposedÂ a “Compulsory School Attendance Amendment”Â to make preschool compulsory in Washington, DC.Â Darcy Olsen of the CATO Institute commented:
- CATO Institute, 14 August 2001, Trading Sippy-Cups for School Desks
As to why the achievement gap persists,Â [AFT PresidentÂ Sandra Feldman]Â says, “One of the main answers can be found in the 68 percent of a child’s waking hours outside of school versus the 32 percent spent in school.” To drive the point home, Feldman also proposes extended-day and extended-year schooling along with new summer programs. Why not just cut out the family altogether and send newborns to boarding school?
Almost five years later the state of Illinois proposes much the same thing.Â
- Illinois Family Institute, 11 March 2006, Give me your poor, your tired—your toddlers
The race for the governor’s seat is turning into a race for our youngest children under the banner of Universal Preschool. Three other states offer preschool to 4-year-olds, but Governor Rod Blagojevich is not to be outdone. He is proposing every 3-year-old and 4-year-old attend state-funded preschool.
Next year it will have been 20 years since David Elkind wrote Miseducation:Â Preschoolers at Risk.Â Perhaps a 501(c)(3) group could get started to collect donations to send this book, at the least, to anyone espousing state preschool.
Another book that my fictional foundationÂ mightÂ distribute is Cradles of Eminence,Â “An absorbing study of the childhoods of some 400 prominent people that seeks to relate early-childhood factors to eventual success in life.”Â
Preschool isn’t mentioned as a factor in the introductory overview.