EduQuant seminar: Matti Sarvimäki on Finland's Two-Year Preschool Experiment
Together with Finland's Ministry of Education and Culture, we designed a randomized experiment to test the impact of preschool on children's social and academic skills and well-being. At the moment, compulsory education in Finland starts at age six with one year of preschool education and continues with elementary school starting at age seven. Our intervention advances the starting age of mandatory preschool by one year, from age six to five. The treatment group (N $\approx$ 15,000) attends preschool for two years instead of one, following a curriculum created by Finnish National Agency for Education specifically for the two-year preschool. The control group (N $\approx$ 20,000) either continues with the business-as-usual early childhood education at daycare centers or stays at home. We evaluate each child three times between ages five and seven using standardized tests and teacher evaluations. Our primary outcomes are indexes of psycho-social skills, self-esteem, and arithmetic and reading skills. These data are augmented using register-based data on the children and their parents, and online surveys for teachers, parents and civil servants. The broader research project also includes in-depth interviews with children and parents and text analysis of administrative records.
It will be possible to join the seminar in person in room CSS 7.0.40 or via Zoom: https://ucph-ku.zoom.us/j/65489756009?pwd=c2xTM1ZXUjF2V1c0Vmt4dWF6NlZDdz09 passcode: 912484