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What is Control Contamination

Handbook of Research on Innovative Approaches to Early Childhood Development and School Readiness
Where participants in a control group receive early childhood services independent of the study.
Published in Chapter:
The Importance of Investing in Early Childhood Development and the Role of Families
Alison Baulos (University of Chicago, USA) and James Heckman (University of Chicago, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-8649-5.ch002
Efforts to reduce inequality and promote better learning outcomes will only be effective when they include a focus on early childhood development. Investments made early in childhood, a period when inequality gaps emerge, have the potential to provide a higher return on investment than at any other time during an individual's life. The basic skills acquired during the first five years of life are the foundation for important future skills. Whether or not a child attends formal childcare prior to schooling, the family is still the primary influence in a young person's life; a home environment lacking enrichment will lead to skills gaps that persist throughout a lifetime. This chapter makes the case that by starting early and providing support to parents and primary caregivers, there is the potential to promote social mobility and positive outcomes for children, their families, and ultimately, future generations in the aggregate.
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