Variation in the long-term benefits of child care: The role of classroom quality in elementary school.

Data from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (N = 1,307) were used to estimate the additive and multiplicative benefits of high-quality child care between birth to 54 months of age and high-quality elementary school education between first and fifth grade. Results indicated that the math and language and literacy benefits of high-quality child care accrued from the end of preschool through age 15 only when coupled with higher quality classroom environments during the elementary school years. In contrast, the benefits of high-quality child care were no longer present when children later attended lower quality classrooms in elementary school. Taken together, these results point to the importance of continued investments in children’s education throughout the first decade of life. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)