Subject: Studies in the News 07-24 (March 27, 2007)

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Studies in the News for
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Children and Families Commission

Contents This Week

   Disruptive behavior linked to time in day care
   Excellence in the classroom
   An interview with Edward F. Zigler
   Improving the quality of teaching
   10-year early education initiative
   Spanish-speaking preschoolers in English-only classrooms
   State infant and toddler program profiles
   Promoting healthy families resource packet
   Teen pregnancy survey information
   Children with chronic conditions and disabilities
   Racial and ethnic differences in children’s overweight
   Supporting healthy social and emotional development
   Family, friend, and neighbor care
   Creating early childhood facilities
   California schools hurt by red tape
   Federal spending favors seniors over children
   Quality in 'kith and kin' child care
   Spanish speaking children in pre-kindergarten
   Latino parent school involvement
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

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; 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:


"Are There Long-Term Effects of Early Child Care?" By Jay Belsky and others. IN: Child Development, vol. 78, no. 2 (March/April 2007) pp. 681-701.

Full Text at:

["A much-anticipated report from the largest and longest-running study of American child care has found that keeping a preschooler in a day care center for a year or more increased the likelihood that the child would become disruptive in class - and that the effect persisted through the sixth grade. The effect was slight, and well within the normal range for healthy children, the researchers found. And as expected, parents’ guidance and their genes had by far the strongest influence on how children behaved. But the finding held up regardless of the child’s sex or family income, and regardless of the quality of the day care center. With more than two million American preschoolers attending day care, the increased disruptiveness very likely contributes to the load on teachers who must manage large classrooms, the authors argue. On the positive side, they also found that time spent in high-quality day care centers was correlated with higher vocabulary scores through elementary school.... The findings are certain to feed a long-running debate over day care, experts say." New York Times (March 26, 2007). NOTE: Child Development... is available for loan.]

[Request #S73041]

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Excellence in the Classroom. IN: The Future of Children, vol. 17, no. 1 (Spring 2007) Special issue.

["Concern about the overall quality of U.S. education, and in particular about the troublesome gaps in achievement for low-income and minority students, has led many policymakers and parents to demand reform of the educational system. But for reform to make a difference, it must penetrate the classroom and affect the quality of teaching. Almost everyone recognizes the importance of effective teachers, but it is much less clear how to improve the teaching workforce - both increasing the effectiveness of those already teaching and the recruitment of new, high-quality teachers.... Researchers have established that carefully designed public policies can increase the effectiveness of teachers improving student achievement. The articles in this volume explore key tools available to policymakers."]

Executive Summary: 2 p.

Excellence in the Classroom (Entire issue): 232 p.

[Request #S73042]

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Minding Young Minds: An Interview with Edward F. Zigler. By Richard L. Colvin. Analysis and Perspectives. (Education Sector, Washington, DC) March 8, 2007. 8 p.

Full Text at:

["Edward F. Zigler has been a leading national authority on child development and early learning for more than four decades. Today, as growing numbers of policymakers embrace pre-kindergarten as an important source of education opportunity, Zigler, an active scholar and prolific author at 77, continues to play a central role in shaping the nation's thinking on early learning. Born in Missouri to Polish immigrant parents, he earned a doctorate in developmental psychology from the University of Texas - Austin in 1959 and began teaching in the psychology department at Yale University the same year. In 1964, Zigler was appointed to a White House panel that spawned the creation of the federal Head Start program for economically disadvantaged children a year later. Zigler became the first director of the federal Office of Child Development (now the Administration on Children, Youth and Families), where he administered Head Start and programs to improve child care. Three decades later, he headed a national commission on infant care that inspired the federal Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, a law that gives working parents greater opportunities to be with their newborn children."]

[Request #S73043]

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A Plan to Improve the Quality of Teaching in American Schools. By Ron Haskins and Susanna Loeb. The Future of Children. Policy Brief. (Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, and the Brookings Institution, Washington, DC) Spring 2007. 8 p.

Full Text at:

["Research on teacher quality shows not only that students who have good teachers learn more but that their learning is cumulative if they have good teachers for several consecutive years. The major goal of educational reformers today should be to boost teacher quality. We outline a five-part plan by which school systems could achieve this goal. The plan includes rethinking entry requirements for teaching, implementing a strategy to identify effective teachers, promoting only effective teachers, giving bonuses to teachers who teach disadvantaged students or in fields that are difficult to staff, and promoting professional development linked directly to teachers’ work."]

[Request #S73044]

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"Project Launches 10-Year Initiative to Link Early Education, Economy." By Rhea R. Borja. IN: Education Week, vol. 26, no. 27 (March 14, 2007) p. 12.

Full Text at:

["A group of business leaders, economists and philanthropists formally unveiled a 10-year project to make early education a top U.S. economic priority. Concerns over global competition, the need for an innovative and better-trained workforce and the growing national debt spurred the development of the Partnership for America's Economic Success, said the chairman of the project's advisory board.... The $3.1 million project.... has a three-phase strategy: research, coalition-building and communication. The partnership is now in a two-year research phase, and is commissioning about 15 studies to find out the economic benefits of early education, the scope and size of the youth-capital sector, policy options for public and private financing, and information for building a communications campaign."]

[Request #S73045]

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Relationship of English-Only to Young Children’s Social and Language Skills. By the FPG Child Development Institute, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. FPG Snapshot. No. 41. (March 2007) 2 p.

Full Text at:

["A new study finds that Spanish-speaking preschoolers are better adjusted in class when their teachers speak at least some Spanish, compared to children whose teachers speak only English. The key finding of the study... tends to refute conventional wisdom that English-only pre-kindergarten programs help close achievement gaps among children from different racial, ethnic and socioeconomic groups.... Compared to English-only teachers, researchers found that teachers who included Spanish said their Spanish-speaking students experienced less aggression, bullying and teasing by their classmates, and they rated them higher in social skills. Spanish-speaking teachers also spoke more often with the children and had better teacher-student relationships. Teachers used Spanish with Spanish-speaking children less than 20 percent of the time. And almost a quarter of Spanish-speaking children had teachers who never spoke a word of Spanish in the classroom." Raleigh News and Observer (March 22, 2007).]

[Request #S73046]

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State Infant and Toddler Initiative Profiles. By the Center for Law and Social Policy. (CLASP, Washington, DC) [2007] Various pagings.

Full Text at:

[The Center for Law and Social Policy has compiled a collection of profiles for several states that describe "state strategies to improve early care and education for infants and toddlers, and supports for their families." CFK Weekly (March 21, 2007).]

[Request #S73047]

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Promoting Healthy Families in Your Community : 2007 Resource Packet. By the Child Welfare Information Gateway Children's Bureau, and FRIENDS National Resource Center For Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children's Bureau, Washington, DC) 2007. 66 p.

Full Text at:

["This information packet was written to support child maltreatment prevention efforts by describing strategies and activities that promote protective factors. It is written for service providers, to encourage and support them as they engage and partner with parents to protect, nurture, and promote the healthy development of children. The packet includes suggestions for enhancing each of the five protective factors in families; tip sheets in English and Spanish for providers to use when working with parents and caregivers on specific parenting challenges; strategies for sharing the message about child abuse prevention in communities; and information about child abuse and neglect, ..."

[Request #S73048]

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With One Voice: America’s Adults and Teens Sound Off About Teen Pregnancy. By Bill Albert. (National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, Washington, DC) February 2007. 52 p.

Full Text at:

["The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy has been conducting and releasing survey data since the organization’s inception in 1996. With One Voice 2007 is the fifth in a series of national surveys dating back to 2001 that have asked adults and teens a consistent, core set of questions about teen pregnancy and related issues. These surveys provide valuable insights for parents, program leaders, funders, policymakers, and the media about teen pregnancy and factors that influence teens’ decisions about sex."]

[Request #S73049]

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Impact on Family and Work. By Shanna Shulman. Quality Care for Special Kids: Profiles of Children with Chronic Conditions and Disabilities. Update No. 5. (February 2007) 2 p.

Full Text at:

["This brief... notes that about 60 percent of all children have health insurance through a parent's employer, but coverage of services for children with special health care needs varies. Furthermore, the more comprehensive the benefit package, the larger the share of costs assumed by employees. Because children with special health care needs use more services and see providers more often than other children do, their parents may be under greater financial stress, which can be exacerbated if they need to forgo working to manage their child's care. The brief suggests steps that plans can take to address these issues." News from Mathematica (March 20, 2007).]

[Request #S73050]

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"Racial and Ethnic Differentials in Children’s Overweight and Obesity Among 3-Year-Olds." By Rachel Tolbert Kimbro, University of Wisconsin, Madison, and others. IN: American Journal of Public Health, vol. 97, no. 2 (February 2007) pp. 298-305.

["A review of nearly 2,000 3-year-old, low-income children and their mothers found that one-third of white and black children were overweight or obese, while a stunning 44 percent of Latino children fell into those categories.... Why the difference between the groups of children? While the answer isn't clear, the researchers said they did uncover a few clues. For one thing, children who took bottles to bed were nearly twice as likely to be overweight or obese, and Latino kids were more likely to do that than black or white kids. The excess calories in the bottles could contribute to obesity, Kimbro surmised." HealthDay News (December 28, 2006). NOTE: American Journal of Public Health… is available for loan.]

[Request #S73051]

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What to Expect and When to Seek Help: Bright Futures Developmental Tools for Families and Providers. By R. Mayer and others. (National Technical Assistance Center for Children's Mental Health, Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development, and the National Center for Education in Maternal and Child Health, Georgetown University, Washington, DC) [2007] Various pagings.

Full Text at:

["The Bright Futures Developmental Tools for Families and Providers are now available in Spanish. These tools offer a framework for families and providers to begin a conversation about how best to support healthy social and emotional development in children. The tools provide a number of tips for when, where, and how to seek help." Natural Resources (March 21, 2007).]

[Request #S73052]

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Close to Home: State Strategies to Strengthen and Support Family, Friend, and Neighbor Care. By Karen Schulman and Helen Blank. (National Women's Law Center, Washington, DC) February 2007. 36 p.

Full Text at:

["Here's a look at how state policies and practices affect early care and education and family support - and parents' decisions to use relative, friend and neighbor child care, as well as ideas for strengthening this care." CFK Weekly (March 21, 2007).]

[Request #S73053]

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Community Investment Collaborative for Kids Resource Guide. By Mav Pardee and others. (Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) / Community Investment Collaborative for Kids (CICK), New York, New York) 2005-2006.

["High-quality child care for young children requires safe spaces that provide opportunities for learning and exploring. Yet, the time and resources needed to plan and implement a renovation or construction project are a luxury few providers can afford. Community Investment Collaborative for Kids (CICK) is a national initiative that seeks to improve and expand child care facilities through the development of innovative financing strategies for facility construction and renovation. A program of Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), the nation’s largest nonprofit community development organization, CICK’s goal is to increase the supply of quality child care where it is most needed - in low-income communities facing increasing demands for child care as a result of welfare reform. CICK staff engage diverse stakeholders in states and localities to examine child care needs, combining technical expertise in real estate development and finance with specialized knowledge of the child care industry." National Child Care Information Center.]

Guide 1: Developing Early Childhood Facilities: 70 p.

Guide 2: Designing Early Childhood Facilities: 62 p.

Guide 3: Equipping and Furnishing Early Childhood Facilities: 44 p.

Guide 4: Creating Playgrounds for Early Childhood Facilities: 24 p.

[Request #S73054]

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Getting Down to Facts: A Research Project Examining California’s School Governance and Finance Systems. By the Institute for Research on Education Policy and Practice. (The Institute, Stanford University, Stanford, California) March 2007. Various pagings.

["A series of comprehensive reports released Wednesday condemned California's educational system as ineffective, crippled by bureaucracy and in need of billions more dollars. 'Regulationitis' takes away time from classroom instruction, according to researchers, and the maze that makes up California's convoluted school funding system prevents precious state dollars from reaching the classroom. The studies suggest simplifying the way the state finances and runs schools, easing up on rules and giving educators more flexibility - including making it easier to fire ineffective teachers." Contra Costa Times (March 15, 2007).]

Project Summary: 4 p.

Overview Paper: 72 p.

Full List of Studies:

[Request #S73055]

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Kids' Share 2007: How Children Fare in the Federal Budget. By Adam Carasso and others. (Urban Institute, Washington, DC) 2007. 32 p.

Full Text at:

["The spiraling cost of benefits for seniors is limiting the federal government's ability to invest in kids.... The report, which examined more than 100 federal programs for children, shows that their share of domestic spending and tax breaks has dropped from 20% in 1960 to 15.4% today. Barring a change in policy, it would decline to 13% in 2017. As a share of the nation's economy, spending on kids would go from 2.6% to 2.1%. By contrast, spending for adults only in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid - the major programs that benefit seniors - would rise from 7.6% to 9.5% of the economy.... 'Children are a voiceless, voteless constituency,' said Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children's Defense Fund. 'They don't lobby, and they don't make campaign contributions.'"] USA Today (March 14, 2007).]

[Request #S73056]

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Strategies for Supporting Quality in Kith and Kin Child Care: Findings from the Early Head Start Enhanced Home Visiting Pilot Evaluation: Final Report. MPR Reference No. 6107-703. By Diane Paulsell and others. (Mathematica Policy Research, Princeton, New Jersey) July 28, 2006. 138 p.

Full Text at:

["Families with infants and toddlers, especially low-income families, rely heavily on child care that is provided by family, friends, and neighbors ('kith and kin' caregivers). The national evaluation of Early Head Start found that a large proportion of program families used kith and kin care. In 2004, the Office of Head Start funded 24 Early Head Start programs to implement the Enhanced Home Visiting Pilot Project, designed to support the quality of care that kith and kin caregivers provide to children enrolled in Early Head Start. Mathematica's two-year evaluation identified program models, documented implementation strategies and challenges, explored promising practices, and assessed the quality of these child care settings. Researchers note that more than two-thirds of caregivers in the pilot were related to the children in their care, with nearly half being the children's grandparents. Nearly all programs implemented strategies to improve communication and increase consistency between parents and caregivers in caregiving practices. The results suggest that initiatives for improving the quality of kith and kin child care settings can be implemented in Early Head Start with modest additional resources." News from Mathematica (January 2, 2007).]

[Request #S73057]

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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.]


"Spanish Speaking Children’s Social and Language Development in Pre-Kindergarten Classrooms." By F. Chang and others. IN: Early Education and Development, vol. 18, no. 2 (April 2007)

["Many early childhood programs are funded to overcome the achievement gap between children from different racial, ethnic and socio-economic groups. Yet despite this intention, this study suggests that iniquities are present in such programs which likely fuel the later gap. An 'English is best' approach largely ignores the complexities of and stressors for children’s transitions into early childhood and school settings. Transitions can be difficult for all children, yet they may be magnified for English Language Learners. They do not have the English skills to gain academic knowledge or to foster relationships." FPG Snapshot No. 41 (March 2007).]

[Request #S73058]

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"The Role of Culture in Engaging Latino Parents’ Involvement in School." By Yvonne De Gaetano. IN: Urban Education, vol. 42, no. 2 (March 2007) pp. 145-162.

["A critical issue in the current school reform debate is how to actively involve Latino parents in the schooling process. What is often overlooked is the more challenging issue of how to involve them in the schooling process in ways that are both affirming and empowering to them and of benefit to schools.... The cultures and languages of parents that differ from that of the dominant culture, however, are often ignored, denigrated, or at best, treated superficially. This article highlights how a small group of educators working together in a project enlisted the participation of Latino parents or caregivers in schools by focusing on their own cultures and backgrounds...."]

[Request #S73059]

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