Today's front page article on the "very high costs of providing preschool special education to 3- and 4-year olds with disabilities and other special needs" makes some great points--and misses other key ones.
Most importantly, research shows* that early intervention is both more cost effective (for educators) and more beneficial for long-term positive outcomes (for children) than remediation and service provision later in life.
The educational and social benefits and outcomes for young children cannot be underestimated.
And, the piece does not consistently differentiate between New York City and New York State procedures and regulations. NY State, in implementing IDEA, (the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), is the only one of the 50 states that contracts out most of the services and programs to State-approved, NYC Department of Education-contracted programs.
*Solid research on early intervention: