Subject: Studies in the News 07-06 (January 26, 2007)


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Studies in the News for
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Children and Families Commission


Contents This Week

Introductory Material DEMOGRAPHY
   California gets low grades on child care
   Poor children have less parent time
EDUCATION
   Enrollment in early childhood education
   California infant/toddler program guidelines
   Language and literacy in the first three years
   Promise of preschool in California
   Effects of preschool expenditures on 4th grade test scores
   Parent involvement and school readiness
   CCSSO school readiness project
   School readiness, full-day kindergarten and achievement
   Culturally competent early childhood teachers
   Diversity competencies for early childhood teachers
HEALTH
   Mental health services for very young children
   Child neglect - prevention, assessment, intervention
STUDIES TO COME
   Children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News: Children and Family Supplement is a service provided to the First 5 California by the California State Library. The service features weekly lists of current articles focusing on Children and Family policy. Prior lists can be viewed from the California State Library's Web site at www.library.ca.gov/CRB/SITN/.

How to Obtain Materials Listed in SITN:

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

  • California State Employees may contact the State Information & Reference Center (916-654-0206; cslsirc@library.ca.gov) with the SITN issue number and the item number [S#].

  • All other interested individuals should contact their local library - the items may be available there, or may be borrowed by your local library on your behalf.

The following studies are currently on hand:

DEMOGRAPHY

CHILDREN

California Report Card 2006-07: The State of the State's Children. By Children Now. (Children Now, Oakland, California) January 2007. 40 p.

Full Text at: publications.childrennow.org/assets/pdf/policy/rc07/ca-rc-2007.pdf

["California has made some strides in bettering the lot of its children in the past year, but the state still received mid to low marks for children's health care, education and overall well-being, according to a local advocacy group.... The report card, issued by Oakland-based Children Now, gave the state mostly B's and C's in health care and education. But California earned a D-plus in obesity rates despite increased state spending on physical education and another D-plus in family well-being, which measured poverty, hunger, and child abuse and mistreatment. 'There was some progress last year, and we highlight that,' said Ted Lempert, president of Children Now and a former state legislator. 'But when you measure that against the big picture, we've still got a long way to go.'" Early Education in the News (January 7, 2007).]

[Request #S10750]

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A Child’s Day: 2003 (Selected Indicators of Child Well-Being.) By Jane Lawler Dye and Tallese Johnson. Current Population Reports, P70-109. (U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, DC) January 2007. 22 p.

Full Text at: www.census.gov/prod/2007pubs/p70-109.pdf

["This report highlights many aspects of children’s lives that are related to their well-being, such as children’s living arrangements and their family’s characteristics, early child care experiences, daily interaction with parents, extracurricular activities, academic experience, and parents’ educational expectations. These data show that income and family structure affect various aspects of children’s everyday life. Children living in families below the poverty level, children whose parents have lower levels of educational attainment, and children in families with single parents tend to have less daily interaction with their parents, such as talking, being read to, or sharing daily meals, than their counterparts in other situations. Children whose families live below poverty and with lower levels of family income are less likely to participate in extracurricular activities and to be academically on-track than children living in families above poverty and with higher levels of family income."]

[Request #S10751]

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EDUCATION

EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

The Condition of Education 2006: Indicator 2 - Enrollment in Early Childhood Education Programs. By the National Center for Education Statistics. NCES 2006-071. (The Center, U.S. Department of Education, Washington, DC) 2006. 5 p.

Full Text at: nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/2006/pdf/02_2006.pdf

["The percentage of prekindergarten children ages 3–5 who attended center-based programs increased from 53 percent in 1991 to 60 percent in 1999, before decreasing to 57 percent in 2005.... Some groups of young children had higher rates of participation in center-based programs than others during this period. For example, in each of the years observed, a greater percentage of nonpoor children ages 3–5 participated in center-based programs than poor children.... In addition, for all years observed, a greater percentage of Black and White children than Hispanic children participated in center-based programs.... Differences were also found by the child’s age, mother’s education, and mother’s employment."]

[Request #S10753]

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Infant/Toddler Learning and Development Program Guidelines. By the Child Development Division, California Department of Education. (The Department, Sacramento, California) 2006. 169 p.

Full Text at: www.cde.ca.gov/re/pn/fd/documents/itldprogguidelines.pdf

["This publication, 'Infant/Toddler Learning and Development Program Guidelines', presents information about how to provide high-quality early care and education, including recommendations for program policies and day-to-day practices that will improve program services to all infants and toddlers (children from birth to thirty-six months of age). It contains vitally important information about early learning and development. With this publication the California Department of Education intends to provide a starting point for strengthening all programs that educate and care for infants and toddlers, including centers, family child care homes, and kith and kin care."]

[Request #S10754]

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LITERACY

Learning to Read the World: Language and Literacy in the First Three Years. Edited by Sharon E. Rosenkoetter and Joanne Knapp-Philo. (Zero to Three, Washington, DC) 2006. 593 p.

["The newborn is amazingly equipped to acquire language and literacy - these early years are the foundation upon which later learning is built. Drawing on current research, the authors examine the elements of beginning language and literacy and scrutinize how families, programs, and communities can encourage early language and literacy in infants and toddlers." NOTE: Learning to Read... will be available for loan.]

[Request #S10755]

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PRESCHOOL

The Promise of Preschool: Local California Efforts Show the Potential of a Statewide Preschool System. By Children Now. (Children Now, Oakland, California) 2006. 35 p.

Full Text at: publications.childrennow.org/assets/pdf/preschool/pc-local-efforts-report-06.pdf

[This "report highlights innovative, local preschool efforts throughout the state of California. Tens of thousands of California's 4-year-olds are not enrolled in preschool, ranking California 37th in the nation in preschool enrollment. But pioneering communities throughout the state are working to meet the demand for preschool in their neighborhoods. The achievements of these innovative local efforts indicate the future success of a statewide quality preschool system. This report profiles 10 innovative, local preschool efforts. These efforts serve as models for developing a much-needed statewide system. Furthermore, they demonstrate the demand for more high-quality preschool opportunities throughout the state." Early Education in the News (January 7, 2007).]

[Request #S10756]

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Effects of Public Preschool Expenditures on the Test Scores of 4th Graders: Evidence from TIMSS. By Jane Waldfogel and Fuhua Zhai, Columbia University. Paper presented at the 2nd IEA International Research Conference, Brookings Institution, Washington, DC, November 9-11, 2006. 38 p.

Full Text at: www.preknow.org/documents/EffectsofPublicPreschoolExpenditures.pdf

["This study examines the effects of public preschool expenditures on the math and science scores of 4th graders, holding constant child, family, and school characteristics, other relevant social expenditures, and country and year effects, in seven Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries - Australia, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, U.K., and U.S - using data from the 1995 and 2003 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). This study also explores whether preschool expenditures matter more for children who may be at risk of poor school achievement, as indexed by having low levels of resources in the home or coming from an immigrant family or a family that does not always speak the test language."]

[Request #S10757]

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SCHOOL READINESS

Parent Involvement at Selected Ready Schools. By the Council of Chief State School Officers. (The Council, Washington, DC) November 2006. 18 p.

Full Text at: www.ccsso.org/content/pdfs/Parent_Involvement_at_Ready_Schools.pdf

[In a review of the literature on parent involvement, researchers found overwhelming evidence of its positive effects on student achievement. These effects are heightened the earlier in the child’s life that parent involvement begins, with more active involvement reaping greater achievement benefits. Many studies have identified the positive effects of parent involvement on student achievement in minority and low-income communities, but parents in these communities are less likely than wealthier parents to be involved in their children’s schools. Research also shows that low-income children and those at risk of educational failure benefit more than their higher-income peers from parent involvement programs focused on school readiness. While strong parent involvement has clear benefits, schools need specific strategies for involving low-income and culturally diverse families during the early grades. To contribute to these efforts, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) commissioned a small study of parent involvement in four Ready Schools states: Connecticut, Indiana, Oregon, and Washington. Ready Schools states have been working with CCSSO for several years as part of the School Readiness Project."]

[Request #S10758]

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Early Steps with Ready Schools: The CCSSO School Readiness Project. By the Council of Chief State School Officers, Washington, DC) December 2006. 44 p.

Full Text at: www.ccsso.org/content/pdfs/Early%20Steps%20with%20Ready%20Schools.pdf

["In this report, the Council of Chief State School Officers School Readiness Project examines learnings and accomplishments from state teams focused on developing Ready Schools in six states: Arkansas, Connecticut, Indiana, Oregon, Washington, and West Virginia. The School Readiness Project began in 2004 to create and facilitate a learning community focused on promoting school readiness in low-income communities where gaps based on race and poverty are apparent at early ages. The resulting 31 Ready Schools sites focus on accommodating all children at school entry, as well as working with families and the community to improve school readiness. The report presents each state’s efforts to support children’s transition to kindergarten; encourage continuity and alignment between early care and education programs and elementary schools; and ensure high quality learning environments."]

[Request #S10759]

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School Readiness, Full-Day Kindergarten, and Student Achievement: An Empirical Investigation. By Vi-Nhuan Le and others. (RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, California) 2006.

["Recent research shows that large gaps exist, even before children enter kindergarten, in their school readiness. Using longitudinal survey data to examine how children’s skills and knowledge at kindergarten entry predict achievement in later grades, this study addresses two research questions: the relationship between school readiness skills at kindergarten entry and reading and mathematics achievement through the fifth grade, and kindergarten program factors that predict nonacademic school readiness skills. Findings show that both academic and nonacademic school readiness skills at entry to kindergarten were significantly related to reading and mathematics achievement in fifth grade. As in earlier studies, these findings suggest that full-time kindergarten programs may not enhance achievement in the long term. Investing in developing the nonacademic school readiness skills of minority children at an early age may raise overall achievement and may narrow the achievement gap between minority and white students. Home background variables, including family involvement and resources, predict nonacademic school readiness; child participation in extracurricular activities is also associated with development of these readiness skills." RAND Child Policy Update (January 10, 2007).]

Summary: 8 p.
http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2006/RAND_MG558.sum.pdf

Full Report: 79 p.
http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2006/RAND_MG558.pdf

Research Brief: 5 p.
http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/2006/RAND_RB9232.pdf

[Request #S10760]

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TEACHER DEVELOPMENT

Preparing Culturally Competent Early Childhood Teachers. By the FPG Child Development Institute, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. FPG Snapshot No. 37 (January 2007) 2 p.

Full Text at: www.fpg.unc.edu/%7Eimages/pdfs/snapshots/snap37.pdf

["Simply having a culture-specific class or two is not sufficient to prepare teachers to meet the needs of today’s diverse young children and their families. The literature review identified four strategies as the promising key features of programs that effectively address cultural diversity. * Infusion of cultural diversity into curriculum.... * Field experiences providing opportunities to work with diverse children and families.... * Learning experiences designed for students to confront their biases, values, and culture.... * Community-university partnerships."]

[Request #S10761]

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"Diversity Competencies Within Early Childhood Teacher Preparation: Innovative Practices and Future Directions." By Chih Ing Lim and Harriet Able-Boone. IN: Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, vol. 26 (2005) pp. 225-238.

["A study published in the Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education and named the 'Distinguished Article of 2005' examines how early childhood personnel preparation programs are preparing professionals to develop a much-needed cultural competency. The study... examined the literature on innovative models focusing on cultural and ability diversity. The authors... identified promising practices that could be adapted by other teacher educators in the field." FPG Snapshot #37 (January 2007).]

[Request #S10762]

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HEALTH

CHILDREN

Measuring and Evaluating Developmental Services: Strategies and Lessons from the ABCD II Consortium States. By Colleen Peck Reuland and Christina Bethell, Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative. (National Academy for State Health Policy, Washington, DC) December 2006. 57 p.

Full Text at: www.nashp.org/files/MeasuringEvaluatingDevFinalDraft120106.pdf

[This study "presents findings from a 3-year project designed to build state capacity to deliver care that supports children's healthy mental development. The report... draws from the experiences of the five states (California, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, and Utah) that participated in the Assuring Better Child Health and Development initiative (ABCD II)... that focuses on promoting the healthy mental development of children whose health care is covered by state programs, especially Medicaid. The findings presented in the report examine ways of measuring the effectiveness of state efforts to improve the delivery of mental health services for very young children (from birth to age 3)." MCH Alert (December 22, 2006).]

[Request #S10763]

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Child Neglect: A Guide for Prevention, Assessment, and Intervention. By Diane DePanfilis. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Children, Youth and Families Children’s Bureau, Office on Child Abuse and Neglect, Washington, DC) 2006. 112 p.

Full Text at: www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/usermanuals/neglect/neglect.pdf

["Part of the Children's Bureau's Child Abuse and Neglect User Manual Series, the Child Neglect manual describes the root causes, symptoms, and consequences of neglect, as well as interdisciplinary ways to prevent both its occurrence and recurrence." Child Welfare Information Gateway E-lert! (January 2007).]

[Request #S10764]

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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

DISABILITIES

"Neurobehavioral Functioning in Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder." By Carmen Rasmussen and others. IN: Child Neuropsychology, vol. 12, no. 6 (December 2006) pp. 453-468.

["Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) have particular difficulty understanding numbers and sequences, a University of Alberta study shows. An assessment of 50 Canadian children diagnosed with FASD, a condition caused by the mother's alcohol consumption while a fetus is still in the womb, revealed that the youngsters had specific deficits in memory for numbers and sequences, which may contribute to common math difficulties faced by these children.... 'Knowing this would help in classrooms with FASD children,' said Rasmussen. The typical teaching rate may be too rapid for children with FASD, resulting in large amounts of missed information, she said. 'The study definitely has implications for treatment and education down the road.'" Science Daily (December 25, 2006).]

[Request #S10752]

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