Pennsylvania Builds Workforce Pipeline With Investments in Early Childhood Education
A recent national study by Cornell University has ranked Pennsylvania highest among all states in the amount of economic impact that is stimulated through public investment in early childhood education. Cornell's report shows that increased direct spending for early childhood education services generates more total sales and employment than increases in any other major sector in Pennsylvania.
"We know that quality early childhood education builds an important foundation for preparing our future workforce," Pennsylvania Education Secretary Gerald L. Zahorchak said. "And because these early childhood programs are employing local staff and often making local purchases of good and services, many other sectors in their communities see immediate economic gain from this public investment. The ripple effects of these investments are now proven and obviously enormous."
Based on the research, Pennsylvania's investment in Child Care Works, Keystone STARS, Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts and Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program in 2007-08 facilitates more than $1.8 billion to be circulated into Pennsylvania's economy. These programs stimulate the economy by using public funds to employ staff and purchase other goods and services. For every additional dollar spent through Child Care Works and Keystone STARS, $2.17 is circulated in the state's economy; and for every additional dollar spent through Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts and Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program, $2.10 is circulated in the state's economy.
Secretary of Public Welfare Estelle B. Richman adds, "Access to reliable early childhood education services is a key part of our community's infrastructure. In this time of economic uncertainty, this report provides additional evidence that early childhood education benefits everyone."