Subject: Studies in the News 04-17 (March 12, 2004)


First Five California Commission
and the California State Library
Studies in the News
Children and Family Supplement


Contents This Week

Introductory Material CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT
   Implications of incarceration for families
CULTURE AND SOCIETY
   Unaccompanied immigrant children and public policy
ECONOMY
   Digital television and children
EDUCATION
   Raising African-American children
   Two-way bilingual programs
   Promoting school readiness in Oklahoma
   Assessing school readiness in Florida
   Policy implications of universal pre-K in Oklahoma
HEALTH
   Asian-American children and health care
   Child abuse and disabled children
   Toxins in preschools.
   Media and childhood obesity
   Fast food industry and obesity
HUMAN SERVICES
   Rating child care centers
TRANSPORTATION
   Keeping child passengers safe
STUDIES TO COME
   Early childhood environment and adult outcomes
   Early readiness programs.
   Day care cleaning improves health
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:

CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT

FAMILIES

The Implications of Incarceration for Children and Families. By J. A. Arditti and others, Research and Training Center on Family Support and Children's Mental Health. Data Trends. No. 91. (The Center, Portland, Oregon) January 2004. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.rtc.pdx.edu/PDF/dt91.pdf

["This paper explores the experiences of children and families when a parent is incarcerated. The authors discuss the need for greater attention to services and policy development for this population."]

[Request #S1316]

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CULTURE AND SOCIETY

IMMIGRANTS

"Children Without A Country." By Margaret Graham Tebo. IN: ABA Journal, vol. 90. (March 2004) pp. 41-47.

["Thousands of kids arrive each year without an adult and without knowing English. Lacking a lawyer, they face a daunting legal system. Pending in Congress is the Unaccompanied Alien Child Protection Act which would provide the Office of Refugee Resettlement with more authority over the care and custody of children in immigration proceedings, including the authority to make decisions about allowing certain children to apply for special asylum status."]

[Request #S1479]

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ECONOMY

TELEVISION

Digital Television: Sharpening the Focus on Children. By Children Now. (Children Now, Oakland, California) Spring 2004. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.childrennow.org/media/medianow/mnspring2004.pdf

["The transition from analog to digital television provides a unique opportunity to address children's interests proactively in a rapidly changing technological age. Questions arise as to how to best meet the needs of children, what are the potential benefits of digital television, and how can the technology be used to serve children and families, while at the same time protect them from possible harm? This issue focuses on digital television and its implications for kids and the programming designed for them."]

[Request #S1480]

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EDUCATION

ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT

Launching Our Black Children for Success: A Guide for Parents of Kids from Three to Eighteen. By Joyce A. Ladner and others. (Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, California) 2003. 280 p.

["Emphasizing that parenting black youth requires supporting them at home to develop a strong sense of self-worth while working on their behalf outside of the home to bring about social change to ensure equal opportunity, the lessons outlined in this book will contribute to the strengths of black children and their families." NOTE: Launching Our Black Children ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S1491]

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BILINGUAL EDUCATION

Designing and Implementing Two-Way Bilingual Programs: A Step-by Step Guide for Administrators, Teachers, and Parents. By Margarita Espino Calderon and Liliana Minaya-Rowe. (Corwin Press, Thousand Oaks, California) 2003. 244 p.

[Includes: "Planning and Designing a Two-Way Bilingual Program;" "Comprehensive Curriculum Models for a Two-Way Program;" "Involving Teachers and Parents;" and others. NOTE: Designing and Implementing ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S1481]

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SCHOOL READINESS

Promoting School Readiness in Oklahoma: An Evaluation of Tulsa’s Pre-K Program. By William T. Gormley, Jr., and Ted Gayer, Public Policy Institute, Georgetown University. (The Center for Research on Children in the U.S., Georgetown University, Washington, DC) October 2003. 54 p.

Full Text at: www.crocus.georgetown.edu/working.paper.1.pdf

["In 1998, the state of Oklahoma instituted a universal pre-kindergarten program for all four-year olds. In this paper, the authors analyze the short-term effects of pre-kindergarten on children in Tulsa Public Schools (TPS). Findings include: the Tulsa pre-kindergarten program increases cognitive/knowledge scores by approximately 0.39 standard deviation, increases motor skills scores by approximately 0.24 standard deviation, and increases language scores by approximately 0.38 standard deviation; the impacts tend to be larger for blacks and even more so for Hispanics; and, children who qualify for the full free-lunch program also have much larger impacts than the population as a whole."]

[Request #S1482]

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School Readiness Uniform Screening System (SRUSS): Administration Manual 2003-2004 School Year. By the Florida Department of Education. (The Department, Tallahassee, Florida) 2004. 16 p.

Full Text at: www.firn.edu/doe/sas/srus/pdf/sruss_manual.pdf

["SRUSS is intended to gather information about the readiness of all public school children [in Florida] entering kindergarten... Information derived from the screening system is intended to serve multiple purposes. First, it will assist teachers in understanding the abilities of children entering school and will help target instruction for helping children to become successful learners. Information derived from the screening system should assist teachers in curriculum planning and improve school readiness programs and services for preschool-age children."]

[Request #S1483]

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The Effects of Universal Pre-K in Oklahoma: Research Highlights and Policy Implications. By William T. Gormley, Jr., Public Policy Institute, Georgetown University, and Deborah Phillips, Department of Psychology, Georgetown University. (The Center for Research on Children in the United States, Georgetown University, Washington, DC) October 2003. 34 p.

Full Text at: www.crocus.georgetown.edu/working.paper.2.pdf

["Oklahoma is one of only three states in the nation to offer a free pre-kindergarten (pre-K) program to all students in participating school districts on a voluntary basis. The evaluation showed strong positive effects of the pre-K program on children’s language and cognitive test scores, but not on scores for social-emotional or motor skills. Hispanic children benefited most from the program and black children also showed sharp gains, especially when they attended full-day programs. The results are discussed in light of contemporary controversies regarding targeted or universal pre-K programs; full- or part-day programming; public school or multiple delivery sites; strategies for ensuring high quality, effective programs; and the need for rigorous program evaluations."]

[Request #S1484]

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HEALTH

ACCESS TO CARE

"Health Status and Health Services Utilization Among U.S. Chinese, Asian Indian, Filipino, and Other Asian/Pacific Islander Children." By Stella M. Yu and others. IN: Pediatrics, vol. 113, no. 1 (January 2004) pp. 101-107.

["There is a lack of information on health status, health care access, and health services utilization among Asian American children. The study describes the prevalence of health status and health services indicators among Chinese, Filipino, Asian Indian, and other Asian Pacific Islander children and examines the effects of socioeconomic and demographic factors on health status, health care access, and health services utilization." Maternal and Child Health Alert (January 16, 2004) 1.]

[Request #S1364]

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CHILD ABUSE

Keeping Our Children Safe: A Booklet for Caregivers and Providers of Children with Developmental Disabilities to Reduce the Risk of Abuse. By Angela Bissada and others. (Project Heal, University of Southern California/University Affiliated Program at Childrens Hospital, Los Angeles, California) 2000. 24 p.

["Children with developmental disabilities are at risk for abuse. This booklet is intended for caregivers and service providers of children and adolescents with developmental disabilities. It was written to help caregivers learn more about the problem, how to communicate with children about abuse, and where to go for help." NOTE: Keeping Our Children Safe ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S1485]

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DAY CARE

"On the Alert for Toxins in Preschools." By Eve Pearlman. IN: Children's Advocate (January-February 2004) p. 13.

Full Text at: www.4children.org/pdf/104cc.pdf

["In California's Contra Costa County, an environmentally savvy mom is helping preschool administrators recognize and eliminate toxic hazards in their classrooms." Connect for Kids (March 8, 2004) online.]

[Request #S1488]

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OBESITY

The Role of Media in Childhood Obesity. By the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. (The Foundation, Washington, DC) February 2004. 12 p.

Full Text at: www.kff.org/entmedia/loader.cfm?url=/commonspot/security/getfile.cfm&PageID=32022

["While the magnitude of the impact of media's effects on childhood obesity is not clear, the body of evidence indicates there is a role for media-related policies to play in a comprehensive effort to prevent and reduce childhood obesity. While this report does not endorse any specific policies, it does lay out a variety of possibilities for consideration, from reducing the time children spend with media to reducing their exposure to food advertising, to increasing the number of media messages promoting fitness and sound nutrition."]

[Request #S1489]

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"The McLawsuit: The Fast-Food Industry and Legal Accountability for Obesity; No Matter What Its Ultimate Outcome in the Courts, Could Change Public Attitudes and Industry Regulation." By Michelle M. Mello and others. IN: Health Affairs, vol. 22, no. 6 (November/December 2003) pp. 207-216.

["Recent litigation brought by a group of overweight children against the McDonald's Corporation that seeks compensation for obesity-related health problems has provoked an intense public response. In this paper, the authors consider the reasonableness of the claims against fast-food companies and discuss several social effects that the litigation may have irrespective of its outcome in court." RAND Child Policy Project (December 18, 2003) 3.]

[Request #S1490]

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HUMAN SERVICES

CHILD CARE

"Napolitano Seeks System to Rate Child Care Centers." By Monica Mendoza. IN: The Arizona Republic (February 29, 2004) 5 p.

["If Phoenix parent Jennifer Plath had been looking for a high-quality restaurant or hotel, it would have been easy. She could have picked up a copy of the Mobil Travel Guide to find a five-star place to eat or stay. But when it came to finding the right child-care center for her infant daughter, all she had to rely on was her gut instinct. Gov. Janet Napolitano says that's not good enough for parents of the 200,000 children who spend their days in child-care centers. Napolitano has directed the Arizona School Readiness Board to devise a system to measure child-care centers on quality, giving each a rating much like a restaurant or hotel. Centers would be graded on such things as educational programs and how well teachers are trained in early childhood education."]

[Request #S1486]

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TRANSPORTATION

AUTOMOBILE SAFETY

Keeping Child Passengers Safe. By Melissa Savage, National Conference of State Legislatures. Legisbrief. Vol. 12, No. 13. (NCSL, Denver, Colorado) March 2004. 2 p.

["During the last few decades, motor vehicle fatality rates for children have decreased. Enforcement of child passenger laws and education can be credited for the steady decline. Although the decline is good news, thousands of children still are killed or injured each year in motor vehicle crashes. Appropriate use of child safety seats, booster seats and seat belts are the most effective way to cut down on the number of deaths and injuries to children."]

[Request #S1487]

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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

"Effects of Environmental Enrichment At Ages 3-5 Years on Schizotypal Personality and Antisocial Behavior at Ages 17 and 23 Years." By Adrian Raine and others. IN: American Journal of Psychiatry, vol. 160, no. 9 (September 2003) pp. 1627-1635.

["This study assessed the effects of an early nutritional, educational, and physical exercise enrichment program on adult outcome for schizotypal personality, conduct disorder, and criminal behavior... The results are consistent with an increasing body of knowledge that implicates an enriched, stimulating environment in beneficial psychological and behavioral outcomes. These findings have potential implications for the prevention of schizophrenia and criminal behavior."]

[Request #S1491]

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SCHOOL READINESS

"Do Parents Benefit? Perspectives of Low-Income Parents Who Received a Free Early Readiness Program for Their Child." By Donita Massengill, University of Kansas, Lawrence. IN: Early Childhood Education Journal, vol. 31, issue 3. (March 2004) pp. 179-185.

["The purpose of this study was to discover the interpretations and perspectives of 4 low-income parents who received a free early readiness program for their child. Two interviewees were parents who had a child enrolled the year data was collected, and the other two interviewees were parents whose children had participated previously in the early readiness program. The results of this study show that the early readiness program offered benefits to the parents as well as the child, regardless of enrollment year. The benefits include, but were not limited to, social support for parents, financial assistance, greater understanding of their children, and practical parenting ideas. The findings of this study supported the value of free early readiness programs for low-income parents. The discussion substantiates the findings of this study with previous research and concludes there were several identifiable benefits for the parents."]

[Request #S1492]

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HEALTH

DAY CARE

Impact of a Hygiene Intervention on Illness in Child Care Centers. By Lori A Strazdas and others, University of Arizona, Tucson. (The University, Tucson, Arizona) 2004. Packet includes study, CD-ROM, other papers.

["Children in day-care centers are less likely to get sick and need antibiotics when their center routinely cleans and disinfects, according to this study. The study supports what public health researchers -- and generations of mothers -- have believed for decades: disinfecting helps protect against the spread of germs among children. In the centers that followed the study's disinfecting protocol, children were 37 percent less likely to experience diarrheal illness; 36 percent less likely to receive prescriptions for antibiotics; 17 percent less likely to report ear aches; and 10 percent less likely to come down with an upper respiratory illness, such as the cold or flu." UA News Services (February 27, 2004) online. NOTE: Impact of a Hygiene Intervention ... will be available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S1493]

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