To the Editor:
In an ideal world, Samuel J. Meisels’ argument for educational intervention beginning at birth would not be needed (“Universal Pre-K: What About the Babies?,” Jan. 25, 2006). Parents would all be willing and able to provide the kind of pre-K experiences that pay off in continuing academic achievement.
Since that’s not the case by a long shot, the best we can hope for is a compromise between Mr. Meisels’ proposal and the kind of program that the actor/activist Rob Reiner is championing in California. His Preschool for All measure, which is slated for the June 6 statewide ballot, has its faults, but it marks an important step in recognizing the potential of reaching children at an age when they stand a chance of overcoming the circumstances of their environment.
If Mr. Reiner’s initiative is approved and is implemented properly—two big ifs—subsequent measures along the lines that Mr. Meisels supports will stand a far better chance of becoming a reality.
Los Angeles, Calif.