The Promise of Pre-K

Volume Editors: Robert C. Pianta Ph.D., Carollee Howes Ph.D.; Foreword Author: Richard M. Clifford Ph.D.

Format: Paperback, 208 pages, 6.0 x 9.0
ISBN: 9781598570335
Price: $36.95

Add to cart


High-quality pre-K that really improves children's outcomes—that's the goal early childhood professionals will work toward with this groundbreaking text, the first volume in the NEW National Center for Research on Early Childhood Education (NCRECE) series. Combining the most current knowledge of top researchers, policy makers, and federal and state officials, this book examines where pre-K is today and inspires decision-makers with concrete examples of successful programs.

With this in-depth examination of the latest research and practice, readers will be better prepared to

  • make a compelling argument for supporting high-quality pre-K, articulating how it boosts children's school readiness and academic performance
  • address the complex challenges of expanding pre-K at the national and state level
  • understand the pros and cons of different types of pre-K programs: universal vs. targeted, whole day vs. part day, centralized vs. local, one curriculum vs. many
  • make informed decisions about the most important issues in program development

To find out what's already working in pre-K program development, readers will get an inside look at five successful state-level programs in New York, Maryland, Louisiana, Georgia, and North Carolina. Through detailed analyses of each program's characteristics, these extended case examples give decision-makers a template for effective, child-centered early education.

An essential resource for policy makers, researchers, and teacher educators, this important volume will help early childhood professionals make progress toward their ultimate goal: pre-K that responds to children's changing needs, helps close the achievement gap, and ensures school readiness.

Critical insights on key issues in pre-K program development:

  • program funding
  • adherence to early learning standards
  • assessment of both children and program quality
  • teacher preparation
  • class size
  • curriculum selection
  • technical assistance and other infrastructure needs


Review: Education Review, June 2011

"A critical read for researchers and graduate students studying early childhood programs and policies as well as policymakers who are interested in improving early childhood curricula, policies, and programs to better serve children."

Review by: Tracy Pastian, ERS e-Bulletin

"Provides multiple recommendations to educators, researchers, and policy makers on ways to make all pre-K programs more effective and to ensure that, one day, they meet their goal of closing the achievement gap, readying students for school, and improving achievements for all students."

Review: Midwest Book Review

"Any library in early childhood education needs The Promise of Pre-K."

Review by: Gail Perry, Young Children

"Noted reseearchers and federal and state officials provide a state-of-the-art report on the complex challenges and successes of the movement toward universal prekindergarten...This book is an essential resource for all those considering launching or expanding prekindergarten programs in their state."

Review by: Libby Doggett, Deputy Director, Pew Center on the States, Washington, D.C.

"An unrivaled field reference for anyone working toward high-quality pre-k for all . . . The authors capture the breadth of this national movement, the intricacies of building state pre-k programs, and the essential questions policymakers and advocates must confront."

Review by: Sharon Kagan, Professor and Associate Dean for Policy, Teachers College, Columbia University and Professor Adjunct, Yale University

"In celebrating the successes without sugar-coating the challenges, Pianta and Howes have assembled THE definitive collection of essays on America's pre-kindergarten movement."

Table of Contents

Series Preface
About the Editors
About the Contributors
Foreword: Richard M. Clifford

Section I: National Level Concerns

  1. An Overview of Prekindergarten Policy in the United States: Program Governance, Eligibility, Standards, and Finance - W Steven Barnett, Allison H. Friedman, Jason T. Hustedt, & Judi Stevenson-Boyd
  2. Assessing the School Readiness Needs of a State - Thomas Schultz
  3. Models for Financing State-Supported Prekindergarten Programs - Anne W. Mitchell
  4. Comparing Universal and Targeted Prekindergarten Programs - Aryn M. Dotterer, Margaret Burchinal, Donna M. Bryant, Diane M. Early, & Robert C. Pianta

Section II: Implementation at the State Level

  1. Research Evidence About Program Dosage and Student Achievement: Effective Public Prekindergarten Programs in Maryland and Louisiana - Craig T. Ramey, Sharon Landesman Ramey, & Billy R. Stokes
  2. Georgia's Prekindergarten Program: Bright from the Start - Marsha H. Moore
  3. North Carolina More at Four Prekindergarten Program: A Case Study of Funding versus Quality and Other Issues in Large-Scale Implementation - Carolyn T. Cobb
  4. Implementing Large-Scale Prekindergarten Initiatives: Lessons from New York - Moncrieff Cochran
  5. Emerging Issues in Prekindergarten Programs - Youngok Jung, Carollee Howes, & Robert C. Pianta


Customer Account

Create an account

Forgot password?

International Customers

If you are shipping outside of the U.S., please send an email with the total order and shipping address to before checking out. We will calculate your shipping cost, and you will complete your checkout using international postage units. Thank you!