Subject: Studies in the News 07-35 (May 17, 2007)


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Studies in the News for
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Children and Families Commission


Contents This Week

Introductory Material IMPROVED CHILD DEVELOPMENT
   Poverty and early childhood intervention snapshot
   Poverty and early childhood intervention brief
   Early intervention increases IQ in autistic children
   Southern states lead in pre-k
   Latino children and school readiness
   Economic analyses of pre-k
   State early childhood policies
IMPROVED FAMILY FUNCTIONING
   Helping pregnant and parenting teens
   Births to cohabiting couples increasing
IMPROVED HEALTH
   Electronic media use among infants and toddlers
   Access gaps among uninsured children in LA county
   Closing coverage gaps for Los Angeles children
   Access to care for low-income LA children
   Nutrition standards for foods in schools
   Cavities in baby teeth increasing
   Childhood obesity school-based interventions
   Preschoolers and child abuse
IMPROVED SYSTEMS OF CARE
   Family child care in the United States
   Models for enhancing family, friend, and neighbor care
STUDIES TO COME
   Universal vs targeted public preschool education
   Too many babies 'big' TV watchers
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:

IMPROVED CHILD DEVELOPMENT

Poverty and Early Childhood Intervention. FPG Snapshot. No. 42. (Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina) April 2007. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.fpg.unc.edu/%7Esnapshots/snap42.pdf

["Over and over again research has shown that children living in poverty suffer in a multitude of ways. Childhood poverty is associated with higher rates of academic failure, grade retention, school drop-outs, teen parenthood, and smoking and illegal drug use. Children growing up in poverty are more likely to have employment difficulties as adults. Research also shows that these outcomes are preventable. Findings from the Abecedarian Project - a 30-year old project at fpg Child Development Institute - demonstrate that intensive early childhood educational intervention can have lasting positive effects for children raised in poverty. What’s more, the program resulted in decreased government spending. Yet children living in poverty today do not have access to this type of initiative."]

[Request #S705080]

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Poverty and Early Childhood Educational Intervention. By Elizabeth P. Pungello and others. Policy Brief. (Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina) December 13, 2006. 35 p.

Full Text at: www.law.unc.edu/PDFs/Poverty/PungelloandCampbellPolicyBrief.pdf

["In this policy brief, we first review literature concerning the long-term effects of early intervention for poor children. Next, the scope of the problem addressed here is demonstrated with descriptive statistics concerning the associations between poverty and key young adult outcomes. Findings from the young adult follow-up of the Abecedarian participants are then described, along with estimates from the cost-benefit analysis. The brief concludes with implications of these findings for today’s young children and directions for future work in this area."]

[Request #S705081]

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Outcome of Early Intervention for Autism. Research Report. No. 1. (Research Autism, Filton, Bristol, England) April 2007. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.researchautism.net/publicfiles/research_report_001.pdf

["Intensive intervention given to toddlers with autism as young as three years old can significantly raise IQ levels, potentially allowing them to benefit from mainstream education, new research has revealed. Researchers at the University of Southampton, led by Professor Bob Remington of the School of Psychology and Professor Richard Hastings (now at Bangor University), undertook a study into the impact of two years of Early Intensive Behavioural Intervention (EIBI). The results of the Southampton Childhood Autism programme (SCAmP) show that a group of children who received two years of intensive tutoring - or early intervention - had higher IQs, more advanced language and better daily living skills than similar children receiving standard educational provision."] Science Daily (May 7, 2007.)]

[Request #S705082]

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Pre-Kindergarten in the South: The Region’s Comparative Advantage in Education. By Steve Suitts. (Southern Education Foundation, Atlanta, Georgia) 2007. 36 p.

Full Text at: www.sefatl.org/pdf/Pre-KSouthReport-Final.pdf.pdf

["Several Southern states have become the nation’s leaders in Pre-K over the last 10 years. As a result, the South in 2007 leads the nation in offering state-funded Pre-K to three- and four-year-old children: • 19% of three- and four-year-olds in the South are in state-funded Pre-K, more than double the rate in non-South states. • Two-thirds of the states with the highest standards for Pre-K quality are in the South. • Only six states require full-day Pre-K programs statewide, and all are in the South. • Nine Southern states fund Pre-K above the national average cost per child."]

[Request #S705083]

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Buenos Principios: Latino Children in the Earliest Years of Life. By Miriam Calderón. (National Council of La Raza, Washington, DC) 2007. 55 p.

Full Text at: www.nclr.org/content/publications/detail/45609/

["A new report by the National Council of La Raza concludes that investing in high-quality, comprehensive early childhood education programs could help narrow the growing school readiness gap between Latino and other children. The report also makes a series of recommendations for policy-makers to improve the quality of life and school readiness for Latino children in the U.S."]

[Request #S705084]

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Dollars and Sense: A Review of Economic Analyses of Pre-K. By Albert Wat, Pre-K Now. (Pre-K Now, Washington, DC) May 2007. 32 p.

Full Text at: www.preknow.org/documents/DollarsandSense_May2007.pdf

["A growing number of business leaders and economists are increasingly convinced that high-quality pre-k is a sound investment. These leaders know financial management and understand the research on pre-k's economic benefits. Pre-K Now's new report, 'Dollars and Sense,' makes this research quickly accessible to everyone. Inside, we review persuasive findings from 10 studies that examined the economic impact of pre-k, from job growth to savings in our school and criminal justice systems. With this report, we show you the money and help you make sense of the dollars high-quality pre-k returns."]

[Request #S705085]

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State Early Childhood Policies: Improving the Odds. By Helene Stebbins and Jane Knitzer. (National Center for Children in Poverty, New York, New York) May 2007.

[This report "provides unique, detailed information about the policy choices that states make to promote the healthy development and school readiness of young children. The report and accompanying state profiles show that most low-income children are not getting the supports they need to build a solid foundation for future growth and achievement."]

Full Report: 21 p.
http://nccp.org/publications/pdf/text_725.pdf

State Early Childhood Profiles:
http://nccp.org/projects/improvingtheodds_stateprofiles.html

[Request #S705086]

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IMPROVED FAMILY FUNCTIONING

Helping Teens Help Themselves: Supporting Pregnant and Parenting Teens in Transition. By the Healthy Teen Network. (The Network, Washington, DC) [2007.] 7 p.

Full Text at: www.healthyteennetwork.org/vertical/Sites/{B4D0CC76-CF78-4784-BA7C-5D0436F6040C}/uploads/{144D5A98-3939-4CEE-B4B3-86562E223FA3}.PDF

["Each year 20,000 foster youth ages 16 and older exit the child welfare system and suddenly find themselves on their own - responsible for finding housing, getting jobs, and becoming adults. This transition is especially challenging for pregnant and parenting teens. A new blueprint from the Healthy Teen Network has ideas to help organizations and communities raise awareness about the issue, and work together to increase housing options and supports for parenting teens." CFK Weekly (May 2, 2007.)]

[Request #S705087]

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The Relationship Context of Births Outside of Marriage: The Rise of Cohabitation. By Lisa Mincieli and others. Child Trends Research Brief. No. 2007-13. (Child Trends, Washington, DC) May 2007. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.childtrends.org/Files//Child_Trends-2007_05_14_RB_OutsideBirths.pdf

["The proportion of births that occur outside of marriage in the United States has climbed over the past 30 years, reaching 37 percent in 2005. This pattern is a cause for concern because children born to unmarried mothers fare worse, on average, than do their peers who are born to married parents. The context of this pattern also is changing, with some experts reporting that the increases in childbearing outside of marriage result almost completely from increases in births to couples who live together (or cohabit). Given evidence of high rates of break-up among parents who cohabit, and the potentially negative consequences for children born into cohabiting unions, it is important to examine trends in these births."]

[Request #S705088]

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IMPROVED HEALTH

"Digital Childhood: Electronic Media and Technology Use Among Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers." By Elizabeth A. Vandewater and others. IN: Pediatrics, vol. 119, no. 5 (May 2007) pp. e1006-e1015.

Full Text at: pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/reprint/119/5/e1006

["The objectives of this study were to describe media access and use among US children aged 0 to 6, to assess how many young children fall within the American Academy of Pediatrics media-use guidelines, to identify demographic and family factors predicting American Academy of Pediatrics media-use guideline adherence, and to assess the relation of guideline adherence to reading and playing outdoors.... On a typical day, 75% of children watched television and 32% watched videos/DVDs, for approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes, on average. New media are also making inroads with young children: 27% of 5- to 6-year-olds used a computer (for 50 minutes on average) on a typical day. Many young children (one fifth of 0- to 2-year-olds and more than one third of 3- to 6-year-olds) also have a television in their bedroom. The most common reason given was that it frees up other televisions in the house so that other family members can watch their own shows (54%). The majority of children aged 3 to 6 fell within the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines, but 70% of 0- to 2-year-olds did not."]

[Request #S705089]

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Access Gaps Among Uninsured Children in Los Angeles County: Baseline Findings from the 2002/2003 Los Angeles County Health Survey. By Genevieve Kenney and others, the Urban Institute. Prepared for the California Endowment. (The Endowment, Los Angeles, California) October 2006. 20 p.

Full Text at: www.calendow.org/reference/publications/pdf/access/urbaninstitute/UI_Brief2_Combo_FNL.pdf

["Using data from LA County Health Survey, Genevieve Kenney, Joshua McFeeters and Justin Yee show that six out of ten low-income, uninsured children had difficulty accessing needed medical care in 2002/2003. The researchers conclude that the Children's Health Initiative holds promise for improving access to health care services for these children if they enroll in public health programs. This analysis suggests that if children participate in the Healthy Kids program, they would have fewer unmet health and dental needs, and would be more likely to receive well-child and regular care." Urban Institute's Health Policy Newsletter (May 7, 2007).]

[Request #S705090]

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How Far Can the Healthy Kids Program Go in Closing Coverage Gaps for Children in Los Angeles County? By Genevieve Kenney and others, the Urban Institute. Prepared for the California Endowment. (The Endowment, Los Angeles, California) October 2006. 32 p.

Full Text at: www.calendow.org/reference/publications/pdf/access/urbaninstitute/UI_Brief1_Combo_FNL.pdf

["One in every ten children in Los Angeles County lacked health insurance coverage in 2002/2003. This brief uses L.A. County Health Survey data to assess how these children could be reached. Findings suggest that the Healthy Kids Program and L.A.’s Children’s Health Initiative have the potential to substantially reduce uninsurance rates for L.A.’s children without eroding private coverage. A renewed push to enroll more children in public health programs could also reduce the uninsurance rate variations - especially with respect to citizenship status."]

[Request #S705091]

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Variation in Access to Care for Low-Income Children with Public Coverage: Baseline Findings from the 2002/2003 Los Angeles County Health Survey. By Genevieve Kenney and others, the Urban Institute. Prepared for the California Endowment. (The Endowment, Los Angeles, California) October 2006. 6 p.

Full Text at: www.calendow.org/reference/publications/pdf/access/urbaninstitute/UI_Exec_SUMM3_FNL.pdf

["Since 2003, the Children's Health Initiative has sought to reduce uninsurance rates among children in Los Angeles County. Using the 2002/2003 Los Angeles County Health Survey to examine the variation in health care access and use among children with public coverage prior to the Initiative, Genevieve Kenney, Joshua McFeeters and Justin Yee find that certain subgroups experienced problems gaining access to care. The authors conclude that the Initiative will not have as great an impact on improving children’s health unless those barriers are addressed." Urban Institute's Health Policy Newsletter (May 7, 2007).]

[Request #S705092]

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Nutrition Standards for Foods in Schools: Leading the Way Toward Healthier Youth. By the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. Report Brief. (National Academies Press, Washington, DC) April 2007. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.iom.edu/Object.File/Master/42/505/Food%20in%20Schools.pdf

["The school food environment plays an important role in children's food choices and eating habits. A new Institute of Medicine report, 'Nutrition Standards for Foods in Schools,' is a resource on this issue for parents, state and federal agencies, educators, schools, and others. James Ohls, a retired senior fellow and area leader for food and nutrition policy, served on the committee that helped develop the report. The multidisciplinary committee reviewed and made recommendations on nutrition standards for the availability, sale, content, and consumption of foods and beverages at school, particularly foods and beverages offered in competition with federally reimbursable meals and snacks." News from Mathematica (May 3, 2007.)]

[Request #S705093]

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Trends in Oral Health Status: United States, 1988–1994 and 1999–2004. By Bruce A. Dye and others. DHHS Publication No. (PHS) 2007-1698. Department of Health and Human Services, National Center for Health Statistics. Vital and Health Statistics. Series 11. No. 248. (April 2007) 104 p.

Full Text at: www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/series/sr_11/sr11_248.pdf

["Tooth decay in young children’s baby teeth is on the rise, a worrying trend that signals the preschool crowd is eating too much sugar, according to the largest government study of the nation’s dental health in more than 25 years. Experts are concerned about the prevalence of cavities in baby teeth of children ages 2 to 5. It increased to 28 percent in 1999-2004, from 24 percent in 1988-1994, according to the report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.... 'When you have more decay in your baby teeth, there’s a greater likelihood you’ll have decay in your adult teeth,' the study’s lead author, Dr. Bruce Dye of the National Center for Health Statistics told MSNBC.com. 'The ability to take care of teeth requires healthy behavior. Unfortunately, we’re not reinforcing healthy lifestyles for our preschoolers.'... One reason for the rise in baby tooth decay is that parents are giving their children more processed snack foods than in the past, and more bottled water or other drinks instead of fluoridated tap water, Dye said. 'They’re relying more on fruit snacks, juice boxes, candy and soda' for the sustenance of preschoolers, he said."]

[Request #S705094]

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Addressing the Epidemic of Childhood Obesity Through School-Based Interventions: What Has Been Done and Where Do We Go From Here? By Karen E. Peterson and Mary Kay Fox. IN: The Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics, vol. 35, no. 1 (Spring 2007) pp. 113-130.

Full Text at: www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/j.1748-720X.2007.00116.x

["Schools are ideal settings for implementing programs to prevent and control childhood obesity. The authors review the evidence on the effectiveness of school-based interventions; offer suggestions for improvements based on the existing evidence, findings from related research, and recommendations from expert groups; and identify critical gaps in the existing body of research that future studies should address." News from Mathematica (May 3, 2007.)]

[Request #S705095]

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"Age of Onset of Child Maltreatment Predicts Long-Term Mental Health Outcomes." By Julie B. Kaplow and Cathy Spatz Widom. IN: Journal of Abnormal Psychology, vol. 116, no. 1 (February 2007) pp. 176-187.

["The age at which a child first experiences abuse may predict the extent and type of psychological problems the child experiences as an adult. In fact, children who first experience abuse as preschoolers may be the most vulnerable to psychological problems as adults. This was the finding of a recent study that explored the association between age at onset of maltreatment and adult psychopathology.... Results indicated that earlier onset of maltreatment predicted more symptoms of anxiety and depression in adulthood, while later onset of maltreatment predicted behavioral problems in adulthood. Maltreatment had the most significant impact when it occurred during the preschool years (ages 3–5 ), indicating that this may be a particularly sensitive developmental period. Implications for child abuse prevention efforts focusing on this age group are discussed." Children's Bureau Express (May 2007.) NOTE: Journal of Abnormal Psychology... is available for loan.]

[Request #S705096]

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IMPROVED SYSTEMS OF CARE

Family Child Care in the United States. By Taryn W. Morrissey, Cornell University and Patti Banghart, National Center for Children in Poverty. Child Care and Early Education Research Connections. Reviews of Research. (The National Center for Children in Poverty, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, New York) April 2007.

Full Text at:

["At some point during their first five years, nearly one-quarter of all children spend about 30 hours per week in family child care (FCC). While there is no universally recognized definition, FCC is typically characterized as nonparental, paid care for nonrelative children that generally takes place in the provider’s home and is regulated by the state. This Child Care & Early Education Research Connections Review of Research package... synthesizes the current research on family child care providers, parental use of family child care, and quality of this type of care."]

Research Brief: 12 p.
http://www.researchconnections.org/SendPdf?resourceId=12036

Literature Review: 28 p.
http://www.childcareresearch.org/SendPdf?resourceId=11683

Table of Methods and Findings: 20 p.
www.childcareresearch.org/SendPdf?resourceId=11684

[Request #S705097]

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Assessing Initiatives for Family, Friend, and Neighbor Child Care: An Overview of Models and Evaluations. By Toni Porter, Bank Street College of Education. Research-to-Policy Connections. No. 5. (Child Care and Early Education Research Connections, New York, New York) March 2007. 12 p.

Full Text at: www.childcareresearch.org/SendPdf?resourceId=11787

["This brief highlights current models for supporting and enhancing family, friend, and neighbor care and describes initial efforts to evaluate these initiatives. Drawn from the realms of child care as well as family support and parent education, models discussed include training, distributing materials and equipment, home visiting, and hosting family interaction groups."]

[Request #S705098]

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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.]

IMPROVED CHILD DEVELOPMENT

Enriching Children, Enriching the Nation. By Robert G. Lynch. (Economic Policy Institute, Washington, DC) 2007. 140 p. TC

["A new study from the Economic Policy Institute examines costs and benefits to society of two scenarios - one in which public preschool education is made available to all children and one in which programs are targeted to disadvantaged children. According to the author, economist Robert G. Lynch, total annual benefits of a universal program would begin to pay for the program within nine years and would do so by growing margins each year thereafter. The payoff for targeted programs would begin in six years with the margin growing yearly thereafter. While returns would vary by state, universal pre-K programs would yield higher returns by the year 2050." NIEER Online Newsletter (May 11, 2007.) NOTE: Enriching Children... will be available for loan.]

Fact Sheet: 2 p.
http://www.epi.org/books/enriching/mediakit/lynch_fact_sheet.pdf

Executive Summary: 16 p.
http://www.epi.org/content.cfm/book_enriching

State-by-State Costs and Benefits of a Targeted Pre-K Program for At-Risk Children: 1 p.
http://www.epi.org/books/enriching/mediakit/lynchtable6.pdf

State-by-State Costs and Benefits of a Universal Pre-K Program for All Children: 1 p.
http://www.epi.org/books/enriching/mediakit/lynchtable9.pdf

[Request #S705099]

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IMPROVED HEALTH

"Television and DVD/Video Viewing in Children Younger Than 2 Years." By Frederick J. Zimmerman and others. IN: Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, vol. 161, no. 5 (May 2007) pp. 473-479. TC

["About 90 percent of U.S. children under age 2 and as many as 40 percent of infants under three months are regular watchers of television, DVDs and videos, researchers said on Monday. They said the number of young kids watching TV is much greater than expected. 'We don’t know from the study whether it is good or bad. What we know is that it is big,' said Frederick Zimmerman of the University of Washington.... The American Academy of Pediatrics estimates that children in the United States watch about four hours of television every day. They recommend that children under age 2 should not watch any and older children should watch no more than 2 hours a day of quality programming. But 29 percent of parents surveyed by Zimmerman and colleagues believe baby-oriented TV and DVD programs offer educational benefits. 'Parents are getting the message loud and clear from marketers of TV and videos that this is good for their kids. That it will help their brain development... None of this stuff has ever been proven,' Zimmerman said in a telephone interview." Reuters (May 8, 2007)]

[Request #S705100]

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