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Costs and Benefits of Early Childhood Intervention

NCJ Number
Date Published
February 1999
4 pages
This report summarizes findings from the RAND report, "Investing in Our Children" What We Know and Don't Know About the Costs and Benefits of Early Childhood Interventions," based on a critical review of the literature and a discounting of claims that are not rigorously demonstrated.
Overall, the report concludes that these programs can provide significant benefits. After updating and refining earlier estimates, the report determined that, at least for some disadvantaged children and their families, decreased government expenditures might result from early childhood intervention. The report bases this conclusion on a review of nine programs on which evaluations were performed that assessed developmental indicators, educational achievement, economic well-being, and health for program participants and compared the results with a matched control group. In most programs, children in the control group were randomly assigned at program onset. The report includes programs with participant and control groups large enough at program implementation and follow-up to ensure unbiased results, although resource limitations did not always permit this. This Fact Sheet presents general results from the report and highlights specific outcomes from five of the nine programs.

Date Published: February 1, 1999