The April 4 letter “Head Start’s early positive impact does not endure” is a prime example of misleading information used solely for political purposes.

Bill Perfetto cites, correctly, that the initial positive showings for Head Start students is not sustained. What he seems not to comprehend is that Head Start was, and is, designed to counteract the intellectual gap between lower and higher income students at the start of school.

Head Start students achieve far better in the beginning because they are being taught by trained professionals prior to entering school.

That cognitive advantage over non-Head Start students does decrease because those students, once entering grade school, are now being taught by trained professionals as well.

Perfetto, if he truly wants to assess the efficacy of the program, should cite studies that compare children who attend Head Start with children of the same socio-economic condition who don’t attend Head Start.

Furthermore, the fact that his letter digresses into a diatribe against Barack Obama demonstrates that he is more concerned with disparaging a politician.

The truth is the program was transferred from the Office of Economic Opportunity to the department of Health, Education and Welfare under Richard Nixon in 1969. In 1984, under Ronald Reagan, its funding was increased to $1 billion.

It was most recently authorized under George W. Bush in 2007, when its goals were aligned with state standards and higher qualifications were required of the teaching staff.

There are so many different opportunities for political attacks. Can’t we leave the little children to enjoy their childhood?

Brant Miller

Hallowell

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