Mar 2011—Toronto Star—Fate of all-day kindergarten in hands of Ontario voters.

March 7, 2011. Toronto Star – article (web): “Fate of all-day kindergarten in hands of Ontario voters“.

Kids First Commentary

Re: Fate of all-day kindergarten in hands of Ontario voters

Reports claiming benefits from all-day K/daycare – behavioural, social, cognitive – are not peer-reviewed scholarship. They are self-published by organizations pushing these programs, eg HELP, CRRU, CCAAC, World Bank, High/Scope. Typically they selectively quote Nobel Prize economist James Heckman saying $1 spent saves $2-$17 in reduced crime, improved ‘human capital’, etc.

Economist Kevin Milligan calls this mis-use of Heckman by all-day K promoters “jaw dropping” “gross misrepresentation”. Heckman is opposed to universal programs finding “no evidence”. His findings are about very disadvantaged families that participated in programs that were not all day, which involved mothers intensively. Heckman supports VOUCHERS for VERY DISADVATAGED FAMILIES to use in programs NOT run by GOVERNMENT.

Sweden – the OECD’s “model” – has academic test scores for teens far below Canada’s, and reports low quality, rising youth suicide and crime, rising domestic violence against women, women concentrated in low-pay jobs – and spends over $25,000/yr/child.