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There's more to gain by taking a comprehensive approach to early childhood development

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Start at birth, coordinate services into comprehensive early childhood programs and achieve greater economic and social gains. Professor Heckman's latest research, "The Lifecycle Benefits of an Influential Early Childhood Program," shows that high quality birth-to-five programs for disadvantaged children can deliver a 13% per year return on investment--a rate substantially higher than the 7-10% return previously established for preschool programs serving 3- to 4-year-olds. Heckman, his University of Chicago colleague Jorge Luis Garcia, Duncan Ermini Leaf of the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics at University of Southern California, and Maria Jose Prados of the Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research at University of Southern California, find that significant gains are realized through better outcomes in education, health, social behaviors and employment. (author abstract)
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