Subject: Studies in the News 06-53 (December 27, 2006)


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Studies in the News for
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Children and Families Commission


Contents This Week

Introductory Material EDUCATION
   Quality of existing preschool programs
   State early care and education initiatives
   Toddlers and picture book reading
   Preschool special education
   Highly qualified PK-3 teachers
   Federal role in PK-3 teacher quality
   Upgrading qualifications of PK-3 teachers
   Core knowledge for PK-3 teaching
   Early childhood education workforce wage data
HEALTH
   Oral Health Resource Bulletin
   Oral health and maternal and child programs
   Vulnerable children and poor health care
   Sudden Infant Death Syndrome
   Preventing shaken baby syndrome
   Reducing Obesity through breastfeeding
   Inadequate sleep and child obesity
   Prenatal alchohol use and offspring's risk
HUMAN SERVICES
   Fact sheet on vulnerable children
   Foster parents and young children
   Low-income children with working parent
STUDIES TO COME
   Ritalin for preschoolers with ADHD?
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:

EDUCATION

EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

"Preschool Is School, Sometimes: Making Early Childhood Education Matter." By Robert C. Pianta. IN: Education Next, no. 1 (Winter 2007) pp. 44-49.

Full Text at: media.hoover.org/documents/ednext_20071_44.pdf

["In his latest article, Robert Pianta from the University of Virginia, examines the impact of teachers with and without B.A. degrees. His definition of a high-quality program doesn’t necessarily translate into a program with teachers who have a four-year degree. To improve quality, Pianta calls for more effective professional development focused on the specific challenges of teaching young children, such as: * Standardizing descriptions of teacher-student interactions, * Direct assessments of teacher and classroom tied to incentive and credentialing systems, and * Improved alignment of early childhood education with K-12. The teacher training that is necessary for teaching young children includes child development information and how to apply that information in preschool settings." CCW/AFTEF December Newsletter (December 6, 2006).]

[Request #S120623]

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State Ballot Initiatives Relating to Early Care and Education. By the National Association for the Education of Young Children. (The Association, Washington, DC) November 2006. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.naeyc.org/policy/state/pdf/2006BallotInitiativesResultsSummary.pdf

["The recent election included many state ballot initiatives that impact early learning, from state financing of services to targeted new resources for early childhood education. The National Association for the Education of Young Children has the scoop...." Connect for Kids (December 13, 2006).]

[Request #S120624]

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READING

"Get the Picture? The Effects of Iconicity on Toddlers' Reenactment From Picture Books." By Gabrielle Simcock and Judy DeLoache. IN: Developmental Psychology, vol. 42, no. 6 (November 2006) pp. 1352–1357.

Full Text at: www.apa.org/journals/releases/dev4261352.pdf

["What do toddlers learn from everyday picture-book reading interactions? To date, there has been scant research exploring this question. In this study, the authors adapted a standard imitation procedure to examine 18- to 30-month-olds’ ability to learn how to reenact a novel action sequence from a picture book. The results provide evidence that toddlers can imitate specific target actions on novel real-world objects on the basis of a picture-book interaction. Children’s imitative performance after the reading interaction varied both as a function of age and the level of iconicity of the pictures in the book. These findings are discussed in terms of children’s emerging symbolic capacity and the flexibility of the cognitive representation."]

[Request #S120625]

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SPECIAL EDUCATION

Preschoolers with Disabilities: Characteristics, Services, and Results: Wave 1 Overview Report from the Pre-Elementary Education Longitudinal Study (PEELS). By Joy Markowitz and others. (Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, Washington, DC) 2006. 157 p.

Full Text at: ies.ed.gov/ncser/pdf/PEELS_wave1.pdf

["The National Center for Special Education Research (NCSER) in the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) has released the first major report from the Pre-Elementary Education Longitudinal Study (PEELS).... PEELS includes a nationally representative sample of more than 2900 children who were ages 3 through 5 and receiving preschool special education services in 2003-2004. This report describes characteristics of the participating children and their families, children's school-related readiness and behavior, and characteristics of educational services and providers."]

[Request #S120626]

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TEACHERS

Ready to Teach? Providing Children With the Teachers They Deserve. By the Foundation for Child Development. (The Foundation, New York, New York) October 2006. 32 p.

Full Text at: www.fcd-us.org/PDFs/2006AnnualReport.pdf

[This report "captures a discussion among leaders in the field of education reframing the debate about what constitutes a 'highly qualified teacher.' The report addresses challenges in recruitment, preparation, and support of preschool and elementary teachers." CCW/AFTEF December Newsletter (December 6, 2006).]

[Request #S120625]

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Teacher Quality in Grades PK-3: Challenges and Options. By Justin King and Lindsey Luebchow, New America Foundation. Issue Brief No. 4. (The Foundation, Sacramento, California) October 19, 2006. 19 p.

Full Text at: www.fcd-us.org/pdfs/TeacherQualityinGradesPK-3Brief.pdf

["Recommended is that NCLB Title V funding be dedicated to early education expansion, conditioned on an assurance that all publicly supported PK-3 lead teachers meet a new 'highly qualified early educator' standard. Competency may be evidenced through completion of a four-year early childhood education post-secondary program or by passing a new, national 'high, objective, uniform standard of evaluation' that is a performance-based measure of knowledge, skills and disposition.... Recommended is that Title II of NCLB expressly authorize and encourage integration of PK and K-3 in-service training and alternative certification pathways for non-traditional early educators, including for example new college graduates who might participate in a Teach for America Early Childhood Initiative or similar local efforts."]

[Request #S120627]

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Carrots and Sticks: New Jersey’s Effort to Create a Qualified PK-3 Workforce. By Sharon Ryan and Carrie Lobman. FCD Policy Brief, Advancing PK-3, No. 6 (Foundation for Child Development, New York, New York) October 2006. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.fcd-us.org/pdfs/CarrotsSticksBrief.pdf

["Rutgers University professors, Sharon Ryan and Carrie Lobman, outline efforts to upgrade qualifications of PK-3 teachers as part of a statewide initiative to narrow the achievement gap in the state's poorest school districts." The Learning Curve, No. 29 (December 7, 2006).]

[Request #S120628]

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Core Knowledge for PK-3 Teaching: Ten Components of Effective Instruction. By Michael Sadowski. FCD Policy Brief, Advancing PK-3, No. 5 (Foundation for Child Development, New York, New York) October 2006. 11 p.

Full Text at: www.fcd-us.org/pdfs/SadowskiBrief.pdf

["Drawing on guidelines set forth by national education groups and the research that underlies them, this brief outlines what experts in the field identify as 'core knowledge' for high-quality PK-3 teaching in the U.S. - that is, what educators of children from Preschool through Grade Three must know and be able to do in order to be most effective in their work. Rather than a discrete set of competencies, the elements of effective teaching outlined here essentially point to an aligned set of standards, curriculum, instruction, and assessment both within and across developmental levels over the PK-3 continuum."]

[Request #S120630]

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Low Salaries for Staff, High Costs to Children: State-by-State Wage Data for the Early Childhood Education Workforce. By the Center for the Child Care Workforce. (The Center, Washington, DC) 2006. 11 p.

Full Text at: ccw.cleverspin.com/pubs/2005Compendium.pdf

["This report presents the latest available Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) salary data in the 50 states and the District of Columbia for preschool teachers and child care workers in private centers, as well as in public and private schools and agencies. Our goal is to shine a light on a key barrier to achieving high-quality early childhood education: persistent low wages of the workforce."]

[Request #S120631]

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HEALTH

DENTAL CARE

Oral Health Resource Bulletin. [Entire Issue] By the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center. Vol. 16 (The Center, Washington, DC) November 2006. 28 p.

Full Text at: www.mchoralhealth.org/PDFs/ResBltnXVI.pdf

["The purpose of the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center (OHRC) is to respond to the needs of states and communities in addressing current and emerging public oral health issues. OHRC supports health professionals, program administrators, educators, policymakers, researchers, and others with the goal of improving oral health services for infants, children, adolescents, and their families.... The 'Oral Health Resource Bulletin' is a periodic publication designed to stimulate thinking and creativity within the maternal and child health (MCH) community by providing information about selected materials of interest."]

[Request #S120632]

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Strategies to Improve Health by Enhancing the Integration of Oral Health and Maternal and Child Health Programs. By the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors and the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center, Georgetown University. (The Center, Washington, DC) 4 p.

Full Text at: www.astdd.org/docs/OHRCIntegrationPaper.pdf

[This publication "describes how to improve oral and general health within the maternal and child health (MCH) population by better integrating oral health activities and information into state and local MCH programs. Topics include the importance of oral health, benefits of integrating oral health and MCH activities, and examples of areas for collaboration." Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Health Resources and Services Administration.]

[Request #S120633]

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HEALTH CARE

Triple Jeopardy for Vulnerable Children: Greater Health Needs, Less Access, Poorer Primary Care. By the RAND Corporation. Research Brief No. RB-9215. (The Corporation, Santa Monica, California) 2006. 5 p.

Full Text at: www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/2006/RAND_RB9215.pdf

["For many children, primary care is inadequate. The most obvious problem is lack of insurance. Many children - even those eligible for public insurance - are not insured.... Access problems are compounded by vulnerability. Vulnerable children are those who face multiple risks for both poor health and poor primary care. These children are in triple jeopardy. They have greater needs, less access, and poorer primary care."]

[Request #S120634]

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INFANT MORTALITY

"Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: Is Serotonin the Key Factor?" By Debra Ellyn Weese-Mayer. IN: Journal of American Medical Association, vol. 296, no. 17 (November 1, 2006) pp.2143-2144.

["The study is the first to find long-suspected abnormalities in the brain stem, the part of the brain that connects to the spinal cord and controls basic functions such as heart rhythm and breathing. This study provides the strongest evidence yet that SIDS has a biological basis and reveals an abnormality in the brain stem that impairs a baby's ability to regulate breathing."] San Jose Mercury News, (November 1, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S120635]

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INFANTS

"Preventing Abusive Head Trauma Among Infants and Young Children: A Hospital-Based, Parent Education Program." By Mark S. Dias and others. IN: Pediatrics, vol. 115, no. 4 (April 2005) pp. e470-e477.

Full Text at: pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/reprint/115/4/e470

["A hospital-based parent education program has shown compelling results in reducing the incidence of abusive head injuries among infants and toddlers. Materials are shared with parents by nurses before the parents check out of the hospital with their new baby. The program materials include an informational brochure and a videotape that describe the dangers of shaking a baby and how best to handle infant crying. The program also asks parents to sign a commitment statement saying that they understand the materials. The program was first tested in Western New York State, where abusive head injuries were reduced by 47 percent after the program. Building on that success, the program was expanded throughout the rest of New York. Phase II added a second commitment form for parents, which they signed at their first pediatrician visit. This has resulted in an additional 9 percent reduction in the incidence of shaken baby syndrome." Children's Bureau Express, (December 2006/January 2007.]

[Request #S120636]

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OBESITY

Reducing Obesity From the Start: California Hospitals Must Increase Exclusive Breastfeeding Rates. By the California WIC Association and the UC Davis Lactation Center. (The Center, Davis, California) 2006 6 p.

Full Text at: www.calwic.org/docs/pk!/bfrates_brief.pdf

["Breastfeeding is recognized by policy makers and physicians as the first step in preventing childhood overweight. Breast milk provides infants with all the nutrients they need as well as elements that promote growth and a healthy immune system. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, breastfed infants may be less likely than bottle-fed infants to become overweight as children or obese as adults. Children who are exclusively breastfed for at least the first few months of life have the lowest risk for becoming overweight."]

[Request #S120637]

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"The Link Between Short Sleep Duration and Obesity: We Should Recommend More Sleep to Prevent Obesity". By Shahrad Taheri. IN: Archives of Disease in Childhood, vol. 91, no. 11 (November 2006) pp. 881-884.

Full Text at: press.psprings.co.uk/adc/november/881_ac93013.pdf

["Not getting enough shut-eye each night may play a role in youngsters becoming overweight, partly by disrupting normal metabolism, a doctor from the University of Bristol, UK, contends in a report.... Although there is a 'strong genetic contribution to obesity,' the current epidemic of obesity has been driven largely by environmental factors - an unhealthy diet and a lack of physical activity - Dr. Shahrad Taheri points out in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. Moreover, there is an emerging body of research that suggests that sleep may impact energy balance and that short sleep duration may lead to metabolic changes that could help fuel the development of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease." Reuters Health (October 19, 2006).]

[Request #S120638]

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PRENATAL DRUG USE

In Utero Alcohol Exposure and Prediction of Alcohol Disorders in Early Adulthood: A Birth Cohort Study. By Rosa Alati and others. IN: Archives of General Psychiatry, vol. 63, no. 9 (September 2006) pp. 1009-1016.

Full Text at: www.medicine.mcgill.ca/epidemiology/courses/676/Fall%202006/utero%20alcohol%20exposure.pdf

["Individuals whose mothers drink three or more glasses of alcohol at any one occasion in early pregnancy have an increased risk of developing alcohol disorders by 21 years of age.... Exposure to maternal drinking during early childhood has been associated with difficulties in thinking, learning and memory, as well as mental and behavioral problems. However, few studies have examined the link between drinking during pregnancy and a child's later risk for alcohol dependence and other disorders.... In the final analysis, which included 2,138 individuals, those whose mothers drank more than three glasses of alcohol on any one occasion during early pregnancy were 2.47 times as likely to develop an early-onset (before age 18) alcohol disorder and 2.04 times as likely to develop a late-onset (between ages 18 and 21) alcohol disorder. Drinking during other stages of pregnancy, including late pregnancy, also increased risk." ScienceDaily (September 5, 2006).]

[Request #S120639]

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HUMAN SERVICES

CHILDREN

Children in Vulnerable Families: Facts and Figures. By the Urban Institute. (The Institute, Washington, DC) December 2006. 3 p.

Full Text at: www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/901016_vulnerablechildren.pdf

["This fact sheet looks at trends in some of the most significant risks facing families today: child maltreatment, domestic violence, children’s disabilities, substance abuse, and parental mental illness. While these challenges can occur in families at all income levels, many - such as depression, domestic violence, and child abuse - are disproportionately frequent among low-income families."]

[Request #S120640]

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FOSTER CARE

"This Is My Child: Differences Among Foster Parents in Commitment to Their Young Children." By Mary Dozier and Oliver Lindhiem, University of Delaware. IN: Child Maltreatment, vol. 11, no. 4 (November 2006) pp. 338-345.

["In this study, the authors examined variables associated with foster mothers’ level of commitment to their young foster children, who ranged in age from 5 months to 5 years. Commitment was assessed using a semistructured interview known as the 'This Is My Baby' interview.... Among 84 foster parent-child dyads, foster mothers who had fostered more children previously showed lower levels of commitment than did foster mothers who had fostered fewer children. Commitment also was associated with child age at placement, with foster parents showing higher levels of commitment to children who were placed at younger ages than to children who were placed at older ages. Commitment predicted the stability of the relationship, with higher levels of commitment associated with a greater likelihood of adoption or long-term placement. These results suggest the importance of designing a child welfare system that will enhance caregivers’ ability to commit to the children for whom they provide care."

[Request #S120641]

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LOW INCOME

Over Half of Low-Income Children Live With a Parent Who Works Regularly. By Kids Count, Annie E. Casey Foundation. Data Snapshot Series, No. 3. (The Foundation, Baltimore, Maryland) November 2006. 4 p.

Full Text at: www.aecf.org/kidscount/sld/snapshot_working.pdf

["In 2005, one in five kids (14.8 million children) lived in one of more than 7 million low-income working families, according to the latest KIDS COUNT Data Snapshot. The brief offers state-by-state rankings, background on the barriers parents face to provide for their families, and resources for helping working families succeed." Connect for Kids (December 13, 2006).]

[Request #S120642]

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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.]

HEALTH

CHILDREN

"Preschool ADHD Treatment Study - PATS." IN: Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, vol. 45, no.11 (November 2006) Special section.

["Ritalin has a 'moderate' effect on preschool kids with moderate-to-severe attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), finds a National Institute of Mental Health study. 'We found that a carefully diagnosed and carefully selected sample of 3- to 5-year-old children with ADHD can benefit from Ritalin,' Laurence Greenhill, MD, tells WebMD.... Greenhill and colleagues report the findings in five detailed articles in... Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Ritalin is a stimulant medication that can make about 75% of school-age kids with ADHD act like their peers without ADHD. It can also stunt a child's physical development. Why give such a powerful medication to small children? A major reason is that kids with moderate to severe ADHD already are at high risk of physical harm. 'They have difficult peer relationships due to lack of reciprocity and perhaps aggression. And they are very prone to accidents,' Greenhill says....' Another reason for the study is an eye-opening 1999 report showing that about one in 100 preschoolers was being treated with Ritalin for ADHD - even though the drug is not approved for this age group." WebMD (October 19, 2006).]

[Request #S120643]

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