Media Coverage | March 2, 2015

Business Leaders Champion Preschool as Smart Investment

John Pepper discusses the importance of investing in early childhood education

Due to the aging of Montana’s population, the state’s workforce is facing an impending shortage of skilled 16­ to 24­ year ­olds, says an article in the Helena Independent Record.

Attendance at a high-quality preschool program has been shown to increase high school graduation rates, which in turn leads to greater attendance at post­-secondary institutions. This is where many young adults learned the specialized skills that they will need to compete in today’s global job market.

I would much rather see investment in preschool, because students are left at a disadvantage if they don’t start on the right foot.

John Pepper

John Pepper who serves as co­-chair of ReadyNation, the leading organization of business leaders standing up for smart investments in early childhood programs, spoke at the state Early Childhood Summit in Helena. He emphasized that high­-quality preschool programs provide a high return on investment.

Mike Halligan of the Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation agreed, pointing to the executive functioning skills, such as teamwork, that children can learn early on and carry through their careers.

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