Preschool programs ranked globally

Preschool programs ranked globally

Forty-five countries around the globe were ranked according to the quality, access, and affordability of their preschool programs.

In a global ranking done last year through the Starting Well Index, preschool programs in 45 countries were evaluated and ranked according to quality, availability, and affordability. The Starting Well Index is a program launched by the Economist Intelligence Unit, which is a part of the company that publishes The Economist magazine. The index found that the world as a whole has a lot of room for improvement.

The index shows that the key to a flourishing economy starts with early childhood development, which means countries must invest and prioritize in the right programs in order to meet these efforts. Finland, Sweden, and Norway made top rankings in the index, and can point to their successful economies for proof of effectiveness.

The report even provided several factors that contribute to the success of a country, including: “universal enrollment of children in at least one year of preschool at ages five or six, subsidies for lower-income families, well-defined preschool curriculum, health and safety standards, high professional standards for early educators as well as commensurate wages, and low student-teacher ratios.”

Overall, the United States ranked 24th out of the 45 countries evaluated. In affordability, the US ranked 16th, along with 22nd in quality and 31st in availability. The report notes that in wealthier nations like the US, high-quality programs are not available to all segments of society.

Read the entire story at Eye on Early Education.
Read the entire Starting Well Index Report.

Submitted by: Frank Espinoza, City of San Antonio Ambassador

Photo: Northside ISD Early On Program