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Data Snapshot: Early Childhood Education

This snapshot provides early education highlights from data collected by the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights.


  • Public preschool access not yet a reality for much of the nation: About 40% of school districts do not offer preschool programs.
  • Part-day preschool is offered more often than full-day: 57% of school districts that operate public preschool programs offer only part-day preschool.
  • Limited universal access to preschool: Just over half of the school districts that operate public preschool programs explicitly make such programs available to all students within the district.
  • Kindergarten retention disparities: Native-Hawaiian, other Pacific Islander, American Indian, and Native-Alaskan kindergarten students are held back a year at nearly twice the rate of white kindergarten students. Boys represent 61% of kindergarteners retained.
  • Suspension of preschool children (new for 2011–12 collection): Black children make up 18% of preschool enrollment, but 48% of preschool children suspended more than once. Boys receive more than three out of four out-of-school preschool suspensions.

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