Democrat Budget Funds Failed Head Start Program
Today, liberal senators have been speaking about the advantages of the Senate Democrat Budget. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) had a number of points to make, but it was especially interesting to watch her tout the fact that the Senate Democrat Budget maintains funding for the failed Head Start program.
Though she reminded us earlier in her speech that she was a prosecutor, it appears that her attention to detail may be a little rusty. Her eyes must have glazed over the parts of the Department of Health and Human Services report that explained that not only did Head Start have no impact on children’s academic outcomes, but in some cases, it even had negative impacts.
But we’ll give her the benefit of the doubt and just assume she didn’t do due diligence and actually read the report about this failed program behind which she’s throwing her strongest support.
Instead of lauding praises on a program about which she knows little, Sen. Klobuchar would do well to do her homework. The Head Start program, as it is currently designed, does not give states flexibility with regard to how funds are used. As Heritage’s Lindsey Burke has explained, Head Start fails poor children; it doesn’t help them:
[I]nstead of relegating poor children to underperforming Head Start centers, if the federal government continues to fund child care, providing states with more flexibility over how they use Head Start funds has far greater potential to better serve families.
In that vein:
Access to Head Start had no statistically measurable effect on all five health measures, including receipt of dental care, health-insurance coverage and overall child health status.
Early Head Start had no meaningful effect on academic performance. The program is ineffective at improving reading, vocabulary and math skills for anyone who manages to progress beyond elementary school.
Sorry, Sen. Klobuchar, if you want to impress us with the Democrat Budget, you’re going to have to start singing a new tune. And do your homework!