Child & Family Blog details study on food insecurity and education by Georgetown assistant professor and Curry postdoc researcher.
Imagine a world in which millions of young American children don’t live with food insecurity. They’d be more ready for school, better able to count and know their alphabet letters. They’d find it easier to sit still, pay attention and finish a task. They’d probably be better at making friends and more eager to learn.
Our study suggests that millions of young American children experience considerable, potentially lifelong educational disadvantages as a result of food insecurity. Eliminating food insecurity for children under five in low-income homes, our research suggests, could significantly improve their readiness to learn and succeed, both in school and in life.
Ending food insecurity is easier said than done. For one thing, it would be expensive. It would also be more difficult for infants and toddlers than for older children, who can be fed directly at school. However, it would also be more straightforward, in principle, than resolving other problems that can also damage young children, such as poor parenting that results from mental illness or domestic violence.