Subject: Studies in the News 04-11 (February 17, 2004)


CALIFORNIA STATE LIBRARY
Studies in the News
Children and Family Supplement


Contents This Week

Introductory Material EDUCATION
   Assessing kindergarterners' school readiness
   Improving child care
   Head Start and achievement tests
   Head start comprehensive services
   Florida's school readiness program
   Measuring universal preschool in Florida
HEALTH
   Data trends on newborns
HUMAN SERVICES
   Analysis of Bush's children's budget
   Value of Court Appointed Special Advocates
   Child well-being under welfare reform
STUDIES TO COME
   Child care workforce
   Effective treatment for children with ADHD
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 cslsirc@library.ca.gov or by calling 654-0261.

The following studies are currently on hand:

EDUCATION

EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

Assessing Children's "School Readiness" at Kindergarten: A Workshop For Practitioners and Policy Makers, September 15-17, 2003. By the State Early Childhood Policy Technical Assistance Network. (The Network, Des Moines, Iowa) Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.finebynine.org/wkshpsr.html

["In various ways and using various tools, states are designing and implementing school readiness assessment systems to answer the important question of what children in their state 'know and can do' at the time of their entry into the public school system. This workshop is both for those in the position of establishing state kindergarten and school readiness assessment policies and those who will be charged with developing and implementing them. Handouts and papers from sessions included."]

[Request #S1258]

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Looking Beyond Government: The Transfer of the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Model Across States [Issue Theme.] By Janelle Kerlin. Charting Civil Society: A Series by the Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy. No. 15. (The Urban Institute, Washington, DC) January 2004. 6 p.

Full Text at: www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/310926_ChartingCivilSociety_15.pdf

["As national concerns over the quality of childcare increase, nonprofit organizations are taking the lead in developing innovative programs to improve early care and education. This policy brief looks at a North Carolina initiative that serves as a model for other states to consider. The report explains how T.E.A.C.H. was replicated in Florida, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Washington State, and discusses factors that supported, promoted, and challenged the transfer of the T.E.A.C.H. model." Urban Institute Update (January 12, 2004).]

[Request #S1259]

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HEAD START

Head Start National Reporting System: A Critique. By Samuel J. Meisels and Sally Atkins-Burnett, National Association for the Education of the Young Child. (The Association, Washington, DC) 2004. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.naeyc.org/resources/journal/2004/btj01/meisels.asp

["At a cost of $16 million a year, Head Start programs are now using a federally created standardized achievement test to assess the language, literacy, and math knowledge of all 4-year-old enrollees. Child development experts question whether this narrow test is a reliable indicator of the impact of a holistic program like Head Start, and whether it's valid and developmentally appropriate for assessing individual children."]

[Request #S1260]

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Head Start Comprehensive Services: A Key Support for Early Learning for Poor Children. By Kate Irish and others, Center for Law and Social Policy. Head Start Series Brief. No. 2. (The Center, Washington, DC) January 2004. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.clasp.org/DMS/Documents/1075300806.3/HS_brf_4.pdf

["This policy brief describes the comprehensive services Head Start children receive. It presents data from Head Start Program Information reports from the most recent program year, 2001-2002, and compares them, when possible, to national data on the services low-income children and families receive."]

[Request #S1261]

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SCHOOL READINESS

Florida Partnership For School Readiness. By the Florida Governor's Office. (The Office, Tallahassee, Florida) 2004. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.myflorida.com/myflorida/government/governorinitiatives/schoolreadiness/

["The Florida Partnership for School Readiness has the responsibility for adopting and maintaining coordinated programmatic, administrative, and fiscal policies and standards for all school readiness programs... The Partnership is the principal organization responsible for the enhancement of school readiness for the state's children, and shall be responsible for among other things: 1)prudent use of all public and private funds; 2)adopting a system for measuring school readiness; 3)providing leadership for enhancement of school readiness in the state; 4)developing and adopting performance standards and outcome measures."]

[Request #S1262]

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"Leaders Get Lesson of Their Own: How to Assess a 4-Year-Old." By Matthew I. Pinzur. IN: Miami Herald.com. (December 16, 2003) 2 p.

["As Florida prepares to implement universal state-funded preschool, education officials are seeking to determine the best way to measure program effectiveness while fairly assessing four-year-old students. The state's education chancellor, James Warford, is considering a plan to have certified teachers test children in kindergarten, with student scores mapped back to the preschools they attended." ASCD Smart Brief (December 16, 2003).]

[Request #S1263]

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HEALTH

INFANTS

The Right Start for America's Newborns: City and State Trends (1990-2001.) By Kids Count and Child Trends. (Annie E. Casey Foundation, Baltimore, Maryland) February 2004. Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.aecf.org/kidscount/rightstart/

["This online report has been updated to include 2001 data, adding to the birth information tracked yearly since 1990. Nationally, five of the eight measures improved from 1990 to 2001, although huge disparities persist across cities and states."]

[Request #S1264]

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HUMAN SERVICES

CHILDREN

Robin Hood in Reverse: Bush Administration Budget Choices Take From Poor Children To Give To The Rich. By Children's Defense Fund. (The Fund, Washington, DC) February 2004. 10 p.

Full Text at: www.childrensdefense.org/pdf/robinhood.pdf

["The Children's Defense Fund calls the Bush Administration's budget proposal a 'reckless' plan to expand tax cuts for the rich at the expense of the most vulnerable Americans -- including the more than 12 million children living below the poverty line." Connect For Kids Weekly (February 9, 2004).]

[Request #S1265]

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National Court Appointed Special Advocate Association Evaluation Project. By Caliber Associates. Prepared for the National Court Appointed Special Advocate (NCASAA) Association. (The Associates, Fairfax, Virginia) 2003. 14 p.

Full Text at: www.futureofchildren.org/usr_doc/NCASAA_Report.pdf

["Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) help children as they progress through the child welfare system and represent their best interests in court. The current study represents an opportunity to examine the short and longer-term impacts of CASAs on children and families in contact with the child welfare system, the services they receive, and the short-and-longer-term outcomes of these services. [It] is the first national, longitudinal study of this scope and will contribute important information to inform child welfare policies and practice."]

[Request #S1266]

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WELFARE REFORM

Child and Youth Well-Being Under Welfare Reform: Recent Research. By the National Governor's Association's Center for Best Practice. (The Center, Washington, DC) January 2004. 11 p.

Full Text at: www.nga.org/cda/files/0104WELFAREREFORM.pdf

["A major question surrounds welfare reform: What has been its effect on children and youth? This issue brief reviews available research on the short-term influence of welfare reform on child and youth well-being."]

[Request #S1267]

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STUDIES TO COME
[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.]

EDUCATION

EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

By a Thread: How Child Care Centers Hold On To Teachers, How Teachers Build Lasting Careers. By Marcy Whitebook, U.C. Berkeley, and Laura Sakai. (W.F. Upjohn Institute, Kalamazoo, Michigan) 2004. 145 p.

["The authors examine how child care programs and their staff subsist in a field characterized by low pay, low status, and high turnover and what the impacts of these factors are on the quality of child care provided... They conclude with three policy recommendations: 1) expand the focus of K-12 education reforms to include preschool years; 2) create national legislation that encourages state and local investments to improve compensation for child care workers; and 3) consider whether child care workers might strengthen their hand when it comes to negotiating compensation packages through formal organization." NOTE: By a Thread ... will be available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S1268]

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HEALTH

CHILDREN

"Psychopathology and Substance Abuse in Parents of Young Children With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder." By Andrea M. Chronis, University of Maryland, and others. IN: Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, vol. 42, no. 12 (December 2003) pp. 1424-1432.

["Treatment for many young children with Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) should also include treatment for their parents, according to this study. In one of the first systematic studies of preschool children with ADHD, the research team found that parents of children with the condition are 24 times more likely to have the disorder themselves, as compared to the parents of children without ADHD. The study also showed that when ADHD preschoolers also suffer from other serious behavioral problems, the parents are two to five times more likely to suffer from a wide range of mental health problems. Since treatments for children with ADHD rely heavily on parental support, parents' problems can interfere with a child's improvement." Healthcare CustomWire (January 7, 2004).]

[Request #S1088]

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