Subject: Studies in the News 03-32 (May 15, 2003)

Studies in the News
Children and Family Supplement

Contents This Week

Introductory Material EDUCATION
   Video series for infant and toddler caregivers
   Older children caring for siblings
   Evaluation of Head Start
   Oral health in America
   Head Start and oral health
   Initiatives on quality child care
   Children left home alone
   Child welfare and judges/lawyers
   Living arrangements of poor children
   Black children and poverty
   Integrating human services
   Social service delivery in rural areas
   Homeless youth
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News is a very current compilation of items significant to the Legislature and Governor's Office. It is created weekly by the State Library's Research Bureau to supplement the public policy debate in California’s Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Library’s website. This week's list of current articles in various public policy areas is presented below.

Service to State Employees:

  • When available, the URL for the full text of each item is provided.

  • Items in the State Library collection can be checked out to state officials and staff.

  • Access to all materials listed will be provided by the State Information Reference Center, either by e-mail to or by calling 654-0261.

The following studies are currently on hand:



The Program for Infant and Toddler Caregivers: [Videorecording Series.] By the California Department of Education and WestEd. (The Department, Sacramento, California) Various dates. 12 Videos.

[Includes: "Essential Connections: Ten Keys to Culturally Sensitive Child Care;" "Protective Urges: Working with the Feelings of Parents and Caregivers;" "Flexible, Fearful, or Feisty: the Different Temperaments of Infants and Toddlers;" "It's Not Just Routine: Feeding, Diapering, and Napping Infants and Toddlers;" "Space to Grow: Creating a Child Care Environment for Infants and Toddlers;" "Together in Care: Meeting the Intimacy Needs of Infants and Toddlers in Groups" and others. NOTE: The Program for Infant and Toddler Caregivers videos are available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S8203]

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School Children in Families With Young Children: Educational Opportunities at Risk. By UNESCO Early Childhood and Family Education Section. UNESCO Policy Briefs on Early Childhood. No. 10. (The Section, Paris, France) February 2003. 2 p.

Full Text at:

["This policy brief, which reviews the results of a national work/life study, notes that the availability of affordable early childhood education impacts school attendance. When care for preschool children is unavailable, older siblings are often kept out of school to care for the preschoolers." ExchangeEveryDay (May 7, 2003).]

[Request #S8204]

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The Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES): What Are We Learning About Program Quality and Child Development? By Ruth Hubbell McKay, FACES. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration of Children and Families, Washington, DC) Winter 2003. 3 p.

Full Text at:

["Begun in 1997, FACES is a way to look at the program performance of Head Start and its children over time. It is a comprehensive study that examines child development, classroom quality, parent perceptions and experiences, and staff characteristics, knowledge, and opinions. In both 1997 and 2000, the average Head Start classroom scored in the 'good' range. Indeed over 70 percent of classrooms studied scored in the 'good' or 'excellent' range and very few in the 'minimal' range."]

[Request #S8205]

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Keep America Smiling: Oral Health in America; The Oral Health America National Grading Project 2003. By Oral Health America. (Oral Health America, Chicago, Illinois) 2003. 24 p.

Full Text at:

["The report card evaluates areas such as oral health access, prevention and policies throughout the United States. Due to stagnant improvements in many areas, the report card gave the U.S. an overall grade of C. The report examined both state and community based programs that affect oral health. Strategies to improve oral health care are a part of the report also. Information highlighted in the report includes: 80% of tooth decay is found in 25% of children, with a significant concentration in minority children; dental sealants, a low cost way to combat tooth decay in children, are only found in 23% of youth under age 8 and in less than 10% of low income minority children; and, for every child that lacks medical coverage, 2.6 lack dental coverage." Child Health Information Project Listserv (May 9, 2003).]

[Request #S8206]

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Head Start: An Opportunity to Improve the Oral Health of Children and Families. By Jolene Bertness and Katrina Holt, National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center. (The Center, Washington, DC) April 29, 2003. 2 p.

Full Text at:

["This brief examines ways Head Start can positively affect children's oral health status when they enter the program. Head Start may be able to reduce or eliminate some barriers to care by arranging support services such as transportation or case management. Promoting oral health for children enrolled in Head Start depends on implementing programs that create a positive environment within each child's family and Head Start center, combined with effective linkages to community-based health professionals to help children obtain necessary preventive, diagnostic, and treatment services." CDF Child Health Information Project (May 2, 2003).]

[Request #S8207]

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Quality Child Care For Infants and Toddlers: Case Studies of Three Community Strategies. By Diane Paulsell, Mathematica Policy Research, and others. (Mathematica Policy Research, Princeton, New Jersey) April 2003.

["This study highlights findings from an in-depth study of collaborative community initiatives to improve low-income families' access to good-quality care for infants and toddlers. It focuses on three types of initiatives launched in diverse communities. The study notes that paying for care and ensuring good-quality care are cross-cutting concerns."]

Final Report. 193 p.:

Executive Summary. 16 p.:

[Request #S8208]

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Left Unsupervised: A Look at the Most Vulnerable Children. By Sharon Vandivere and others. (Child Trends, Washington, DC) April 2003. 8 p.

Full Text at:

["This research brief focuses on two groups of children that may be particularly vulnerable when they lack regular adult supervision: the youngest school-age children and low-income children. Most 6- to 9-year-olds are probably not ready developmentally to care for themselves regularly, and they are probably less prepared than older children to deal with household emergencies. For the second group, low-income children, having an adult looking after them or having opportunities to benefit from regular high-quality child care or after-school programs may be particularly important because of disadvantages that they more often face, such as living in unsafe neighborhoods."]

[Request #S8209]

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Questions Every Judge and Lawyer Should Ask About Infants and Toddlers in the Child Welfare System. By Joy Osofsky, Louisiana State University, and others. (National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, Reno, Nevada) December 2002. 8 p.

Full Text at:

["Do the caregivers have access to information and support related to the child's unique needs? Does the child have a consistent 'medical home' and has he/she been screened for lead exposure? Is he/she receiving necessary infant mental health services? These are some of the questions lawyers and judges should be asking about every baby and infant in the child welfare system, according to this guide." Connect for Kids (May 5, 2003).]

[Request #S8210]

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Age, Race, and Children's Living Arrangements: Implications For TANF Reauthorization. By Ronald B. Mincy, Columbia University and Helen Oliver, Sphere Institute. (The Urban Institute, Washington, DC) April 2003. 8 p.

Full Text at:

["This brief presents estimates of poor children's living arrangements and father-child contact. Consistent with previous work, we find that young poor children are likely to see their fathers frequently even if their parents are not married. This study contributes to the literature by disaggregating these patterns by age and race. Analysis of these results reveals how the administration's welfare reform proposals may affect children living in different types of families, and it leads to recommendations of a set of policies designed to improve the well-being of these children."]

[Request #S8211]

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Analysis Background: Number of Black Children in Extreme Poverty Hits Record High. By the Children's Defense Fund. (The Fund, Washington, DC) 2003. 9 p.

Full Text at:

["The number of black Americans under 18 years old who live in extreme poverty has risen sharply since 2000 and is now at its highest level since the government began collecting such figures in 1980s, according to this study...This analysis further shows that safety nets for the worst-off families are being eroded by Bush administration policies that cause fewer extremely poor children of all races to receive cash and in-kind assistance." New York Times (April 30, 2003).]

[Request #S8212]

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Study Identifies Multiple Strategies and Critical Factors for Integrating Human Services. By Mark Ragan, Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute for Government, State University of New York. (Research Forum on Children, Families, and the New Federalism, New York, New York) March 2003. 6 p.

Full Text at:

["The combining of child care, job training, access to health care, and counseling, etc. is frequently cited as the solution to the mix of programs that exist at the local level to help low-income families. Findings suggest, though, that institutional change within the service agencies is more effective but not easily accomplished."]

[Request #S8213]

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Meeting the Challenge of Social Service Delivery in Rural Areas. By Pamela Friedman. (Welfare Information Network, Washington, DC) March 2003. 12 p.

Full Text at:

["This paper explores the challenges facing social service agencies in delivering services to meet the special needs of rural area residents. It offers suggestions on how to design programs and policies to address those needs."]

[Request #S8214]

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[The following studies, reports, and documents have been ordered or requested, but have not yet arrived. Requests may be placed, and copies will be provided when the material arrives.]


Alone Without a Home: A State by State Review of Laws Affecting Unaccompanied Youth. By The National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty and The National Network for Youth. (The Center, Washington, DC) 2003.

["This publication analyzes legal trends, identifies noteworthy state and territorial statutes and makes policy recommendations.... There are also chapters providing overviews of unaccompanied youth's rights to public education and to obtain and manage medical and mental health care on their own behalf. The book also includes summaries and legal citations for the relevant laws of every state and six United States territories." NOTE: Alone Without a Home...will be available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S8113]

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