Kindergarten Key to Future Success

BOSTON, Aug. 16 (UPI) — What happens in kindergarten does not stay in kindergarten, but may affect success in adulthood, U.S. researchers suggest.

John Friedman of Harvard University says students who learn more in kindergarten are more likely to go to college than students with similar backgrounds.

Friedman and colleagues found students who learn more during their kindergarten year — advancing from an average score on the Stanford Achievement Test to a score in the 60th percentile — can expect to make about $1,000 more a year at age 27 than students whose scores remain average.

Individuals scoring above-average on the Stanford Achievement Test who were in smaller classes earn about $2,000 more per year at age 27, the researchers found.

“We find that both smaller class sizes and teachers with more experience improve long-term outcomes,” Friedman said in a statement. “We believe that other teacher characteristics, as well as various characteristics of a student’s peers, also have significant impacts on later life outcomes, but the data did not allow us to measure those effects well.”

The researchers say they recently presented results of the study, which has yet to be peer-reviewed, at an academic conference in Cambridge, Mass.

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