The environment, border security and abortion — each one a polarizing issue in American politics, so much so that many say that nothing can unite us. However, according to First Five Years Fund’s (FFYF) sixth national survey, investing in early childhood has strong public support from all parties. For instance, voters in both parties said they want lawmakers to work together to make progress on early childhood education. Regardless of political affiliation, voters support tax incentives for businesses that provide or help employees with quality early childhood education. And majorities from all parties support increased funding to Head Start and Early Head Start.
But lawmakers shouldn’t be surprised in these survey results. After all, the return on investment for quality early childhood programs has been shown time and time again. In fact, in Oklahoma if children have access to high quality early learning programs, in-grade retention could be reduced by 32 percent, saving the state $12.7 million. In addition, with high quality care and learning, an Oklahoma child is more likely to graduate high school and get an associate’s degree, earning $441,760 more over a lifetime than a high school dropout. This information was provided by the Committee for Economic Development (CED).
First Five Years Fund’s poll results have the ability to cut through partisan divide and help Congress invest more in children and families. Together, we hope to use this information to continue to be strong advocates for happier, healthier children who can succeed by the time they enter school. To learn more about the FFYF poll, visit www.ffyf.org/2018poll. Or to see the complete CED Return on Investment document, click here.