Robert Knight

A recent Heritage Foundation report by Lindsey Burke and David Muhlhausen notes that HHS finished collecting data on Head Start in 2008 and issued findings in December 2012 although the study was dated October 2012. “The timing of the release,” they write, “raises questions about whether HHS was trying to bury the findings in the report, which shows, among other outcomes, that by third grade, the $8 billion Head Start program had little to no impact on cognitive, social-emotional, health, or parenting practices of participants. On a few measures, access to Head Start had harmful effects on children.”

Meanwhile, the education establishment (“the blob” as William Bennett calls it) applauded Mr. Obama’s gambit. Steve Barnett, director of the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers, gushed that this was “one of the most important education initiatives, maybe, since Brown v. Board of Education,” the 1954 Supreme Court ruling that ended school segregation.

He stopped just short of claiming that the estimated $10 billion to $25 billion program would halt global warming and bring peace to the Middle East. But he tipped his hand, telling the Washington Post that grabbing the kids at age 4 is a precursor to universal preschool education starting at age 3 or 2. “It makes sense from a purely practical point of view to consolidate 4-year-olds before you move on to 3,” he said.

Next, they’ll be promoting “universal infant care.” Why not? The blob honestly believes that its “experts” are smarter than parents. Pay no attention to the growing evidence that home-schooled children excel in every discipline.

Government education is the ultimate progressive solution. As the Post put it, Obama’s proposal “has lifted the hopes of economists and liberals who have long considered early childhood education the best way to help close the gap between the rich and the poor.”

No, it’s not. The best way to ensure success is to shore up marriage, not to create more government programs that supplant the functions of the family.

If you want to know more about why Christians, Jews and other parents should consider removing their children from government schools, not put them there even sooner, I recommend Bruce Shortt’s book The Harsh Truth About Public Schools or the documentary and book IndoctriNation: Public Schools and the Decline of Christianity by Colin Gunn and Joaquin Fernandez.

But be forewarned:You won’t be able to say later that you just didn’t know.

Robert Knight

Robert Knight is an author, senior fellow for the American Civil Rights Union and a frequent contributor to Townhall.