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Why Headstart Works

In: Social Issues

Submitted By ftj1935
Words 964
Pages 4
Gratefully, psychology has evolved since the early to middle 1900’s. At that time, according to the American Psychological Association, researchers believed that people who lived in poverty were inherently less intelligent than those who were wealthier. By the early 1960’s, this thinking had begun to change as revolutionary new-age psychologists like J. McVicker Hunt and Benjamin Bloom offered the notion that cognitive abilities could be affected, even altered, by one’s surroundings. Researchers began studying this theory, supporting that cognitive abilities could be altered by intervening early and attending especially to the physical and psychological development.
Thanks to President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965, at-risk children were afforded opportunities not previously available and, more often, not affordable to their families. With this, a planning committee, including several aspects of development: physical and mental health, early education, social work, and developmental psychology, designed a program intended to give poor children the same benefit as their wealthier counterparts when they started kindergarten (where available) or the first grade. The federal program that was later named Head Start was created; its goal was primarily to end generational poverty.
This program was a radical overhaul of traditional schooling. The developmental psychologists, Urie Bronfenbrenner and Edward Zigler served on this committee. This is important because a key component of what makes the Head Start Program so effective is attributed to Bronfenbrenner convincing the other members of the committee that to successfully intervene and really help the child, parent involvement in the Head Start Program was critical. Yet, until this point, it was also unheard of as parents were not part of the educational process of their children.
In Head Start, currently, parent…...

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