…in keeping with the passage of No Child Left Behind legislation in the early 2000s and with growing concerns about achievement gaps between poor and affluent children, policy makers and educators began to recast preschool from a playful social experience to a more narrow educational opportunity focused on so-called cognitive or academic skills, to the exclusion of broader learning goals. Unfortunately, from these good intentions came a lot of bad outcomes, setting our early childhood education system at war with its better instincts, as waves of well-intentioned reforms move early education closer to a stultifying model of what some teachers call “drill and kill”: the teaching of isolated academic readiness skills in a fashion reminiscent of nineteenth-century blackboard slates, with little or no reflection of what the twenty-first century tells us about children’s cognitive potential.
Quote ID: 01574
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