Public Interest Law Reporter


Conor Desmond

Document Type



Educational attainment has been tied to income levels, employment, health, and numerous other benefits. Economic research indicates that if we focus our funding on programs targeting children from birth to age five, the returns on the public investment will result in higher returns than if it was invested in the open market. In fact, fifteen US States spent over $400 million on pre-k education alone in 2013. Illinois spent approximately $300 million in the 2014 Fiscal year. Through this paper, it will be shown that through effective funding of programs that develop cognitive skills in children aged three to four, Illinois taxpayers will receive a seven to ten percent return on their investment through economic benefits, decreased welfare costs, improved overall health, other benefits to society at large. It would even put a dent in our State's deficits.