Effects of the North Carolina Pre-Kindergarten Program: Findings through pre-k of a small-scale RCT study: 2017-2018 statewide evaluation
The primary purpose of the 2017-2018 NC Pre-Kindergarten (NC Pre-K) Evaluation was to examine the effectiveness of the NC Pre-K Program using a randomized controlled trial (RCT) design. The major issue addressed by this type of study is around the benefits of offering children access to enrollment in NC Pre-K. An RCT is considered the gold-standard design for addressing such a question because children are randomly assigned to either receive the program (treatment) or not (control). Therefore, differences in outcomes can be causally attributed to whether or not they received treatment rather than to other differences between the children and families in the two different groups. This study is designed to follow children longitudinally from pre-k into elementary school in order to examine the short- and longer-term effects. The current study (2017-2018) provided baseline data about children's outcomes during their pre-k year. This small-scale study compared 582 children who were randomly assigned to either NC Pre-K (Treatment=473) or the waitlist (Control=109) in two selected counties with substantially large waitlists. (author abstract)
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