James Heckman Advises "Super Committee" on Investing in Early Childhood

Posted 09/28/11

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Highlights from Mr. Heckman's full letter on the importance of investing in early childhood:

  • Early childhood development deserves more resources, not less.

  • Investments in quality early childhood development more than pay for themselves.

  • We can gain money by investing early to close disparities and prevent achievement gaps, or we can continue to drive up deficit spending by paying to remediate disparities when they are harder and more expensive to close.

  • Early childhood health is critical to reducing deficits.

  • Invest money in quality programs

  • The federal government can and should incentivize the development of comprehensive state systems that focus on providing quality care for the children most at risk.

  • Expand upon proven models.

  • Funding for an improved Head Start and Early Head Start, as well as the Child Care and Development Block Grant, is essential and should be used to spur public/private collaboration on program replication.

  • Collect, align and analyze data from cradle to college and career.

  • Engage the private sector.


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