Six degrees of separation: Child care to economics

Harvard professor Dr. Jack Shonkoff recently told Maine business leaders that early childhood experiences are essential to future economic growth. Dr. Shonkoff believes that healthy childhood interactions in the early years of life and a stress-free environment are essential to the child's later ability to be a productive member of society. He says that early life stress is "absorbed in your body" and can lead to later learning and health problems. Poverty was cited as a major life stress in the lives of children. Dr. Shonkoff urged business leaders to invest in early chlidhood education in order for the state remain competitive globally.

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