Pre-school education and care: a 'win-win' policy (LLAKES Research Paper 32)

Pre-school education and care (PSEC) is often claimed as a ‘win-win’ policy which simultaneously enhances both economic competitiveness and social cohesion. High levels of PSEC are said to raise living standards by increasing female employment rates and improving young people’s skills and to mitigate inequalities by reducing social gaps in learning outcomes. Much of the evidence for this rests on analysis of data for a small number of countries. In this paper the claims are tested using cross-national time series data for a large number of OECD countries.