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Commission: Pre-K For Poor Students Within Decade

Publication Date: 
February 20, 2013
Business Week - Bloomberg
Philip Elliott

Professor Tino Cuéllar spoke with Business Week-Bloomberg reporter Philip Elliott about the recent Equity and Excellence Commission report and why children of poverty are more likely to drop out of schools and less likely to attend college. 

An Education Department commission is recommending pre-kindergarten programs for every poor student within 10 years, adding a timeframe to President Barack Obama's similar call to help the least advantaged arrive for their first day of classes as prepared as their counterparts from more affluent homes.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan on Tuesday released his Equity and Excellence Commission's report, which is not binding but includes input from his top aides and the White House's chief education policy adviser. In the report, the commissioners documented the inequalities of the nation's schools and recommended ways to ensure that students from poorer neighborhoods aren't automatically enrolled in less-effective schools.


"Our country has the highest poverty rate of any in the developed world," said Mariano-Florentino Cuellar, a Stanford University law school professor and co-chair of the commission. "From Day One, these children are more likely to drop out of school, less likely to attend college."