Research studies have demonstrated that investing in effective early education programs that prepare young children cognitively, physically, socially, and emotionally for success in school – particularly low-income children at risk of school failure – prevents or reduces needless public spending throughout the educational, social services, and criminal justice systems for juveniles and adults. Early school readiness also increases future state revenues by lowering drop-out rates and ensuring a skilled workforce that contributes to the tax base.
In 2011, the Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation funded the original version of this study with the purpose of demonstrating the economic value of investing in early childhood education (ECE) in Michigan and the city of Detroit. Wilder Research conducted the study using the most current evidence of impacts and relevant data available at that time. Since then, our understanding of the positive outcomes of ECE has increased. Furthermore, the methods to compute the potential economic benefits of investing in ECE have also evolved. As a consequence, the promoters of the original study asked for an update of the 2011 study by applying the new available data and computational techniques.