Parents' Education Matters For Early Brain Development And Child Well-Being

President Obama recently called upon America's youth to complete high school and commit to at least a year of post-high school training (Christian Science Monitor, 2009). Stopping with high school, the President argued, is "not just quitting on yourself, it's quitting on your country." It's also hard on children and families. In this policy brief we examine the relationship between parent's education levels, family resources, early brain devel- opment and child well-being in Memphis and Shelby County, where a third of children are born to mothers without a high school diploma and where a majority of these children grow up in poverty. For these children, poverty is more than financial hardship. Too often, they lack access to critical resources and opportunities that support optimal early brain development and childhood well-being. The brief concludes with information about state and local resources for parents seeking further education, as well as policy suggestions to help guarantee improved beginnings for vulnerable young children in our community.