Good Things, Small Packages

In a time of gloom and doom about U.S. schools, early-childhood education is something different, a cauldron of fresh and innovative approaches

Some of the best education in America goes on below the adult eye level.

-- Philip Coltoff, executive director, the Children's Aid Society

Coltoff's observation is being echoed in every region of the country. Allan Bloom decried The Closing of the American Mind in his 1987 best seller, referring largely to college students. But in the two-to-six age group, American minds are rapidly dilating. So is the interest in early-childhood education -- ECE to the trade. "This is a wonderful time to be in the field," says Sara Wilford, director of the Early Childhood Center at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville,...

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