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Children and Youth

Evaluation report on New York City’s Advocate, Intervene, Mentor program

Individual Author: 
Cramer, Lindsey
Lynch, Mathew
Lipman, Micaela
Yu, Lilly
Astone, Nan Marie

This report presents the findings of an implementation and outcome evaluation of the Advocate, Intervene, Mentor (AIM) program, a court-mandated juvenile alternative-to-placement program serving probation clients ages 13 to 18 years with high criminogenic risk. The evaluation finds that AIM successfully helps participants avoid out-of-home placement1 and reduce recidivism, as well as pursue and achieve individualized goals to help reduce their risk of reoffending. (Edited author introduction)

Measures of classroom quality in prekindergarten and children's development of academic, language, and social skills

Individual Author: 
Mashburn, Andrew J.
Pianta, Robert C.
Hamre, Bridget K.
Downer, Jason T.
Barbarin, Oscar A.
Bryant, Donna
Burchinal, Margaret
Early, Diane M.
Howes, Carollee

This study examined development of academic, language, and social skills among 4-year-olds in publicly supported prekindergarten (pre-K) programs in relation to 3 methods of measuring pre-K quality, which are as follows: (a) adherence to 9 standards of quality related to program infrastructure and design, (b) observations of the overall quality of classroom environments, and (c) observations of teachers’ emotional and instructional interactions with children in classrooms. Participants were 2,439 children enrolled in 671 pre-K classrooms in 11 states.

Association of childhood blood lead levels with criminal offending

Individual Author: 
Beckley, Amber L.
Caspi, Avshalom
Broadbent, Jonathan
Harrington, Honalee
Houts, Renate M.
Poulton, Richie
Ramrakha, Sandhya
Reuben, Aaron
Moffitt, Terrie E.

Importance: Lead is a neurotoxin with well-documented effects on health. Research suggests that lead may be associated with criminal behavior. This association is difficult to disentangle from low socioeconomic status, a factor in both lead exposure and criminal offending. 

Early childhood lead exposure and academic achievement: Evidence from Detroit public schools, 2008-2010

Individual Author: 
Zhang, Nanhua
Baker, Harolyn W.
Tufts, Margaret
Raymond, Randall E.
Salihu, Hamisu
Elliott, Micheal R.

Objectives We assessed the long-term effect of early childhood lead exposure on academic achievement in mathematics, science, and reading among elementary and junior high school children.

Association of childhood blood lead levels with cognitive function and socioeconomic status at age 38 years and with IQ change and socioeconomic mobility between childhood and adulthood

Individual Author: 
Reuben, Aaron
Caspi, Avshalom
Belsky, Daniel W.
Broadbent, Jonathan
Harrington, Honalee
Sugden, Karen
Houts, Renate M.
Ramrakha, Sandhya
Moffitt, Terrie E.
Poulton, Richie

Importance Many children in the United States and around the world are exposed to lead, a developmental neurotoxin. The long-term cognitive and socioeconomic consequences of lead exposure are uncertain.

Objective To test the hypothesis that childhood lead exposure is associated with cognitive function and socioeconomic status in adulthood and with changes in IQ and socioeconomic mobility between childhood and midlife.

Mothers' transitions from welfare to work and the well-being of preschoolers and adolescents

Individual Author: 
Chase-Lansdale, P. Lindsay
Moffitt, Robert A.
Lohman, Brenda J.
Cherlin, Andrew J.
Levine Coley, Rebekah
Pittman, Laura D.
Roff, Jennifer
Votruba-Drzal, Elizabeth

Results from a longitudinal study of 2,402 low-income families during the recent unprecedented era of welfare reform suggest that mothers' transitions off welfare and into employment are not associated with negative outcomes for preschoolers (ages 2 to 4 years) or young adolescents (ages 10 to 14 years). Indeed, no significant associations with mothers' welfare and employment transitions were found for preschoolers, and the dominant pattern was also of few statistically significant associations for adolescents.

Exposure to lead and length of time needed to make homes lead-safe for young children

Individual Author: 
Zierold, Kristina M.
Havlena, Jeff
Anderson, Henry

Objectives: We determined the length of time needed to make homes lead-safe in a population of children aged 0 to 6 years with blood lead levels (BLLs) of 20 micrograms per deciliter (ug/dL) or greater. Reducing this time would reduce children's exposure to lead. 

Promoting education: The two-generation approach of the Community Action Project of Tulsa, OK

Individual Author: 
Sommer, Teresa Eckrich
Sabol, Terri
Smith, Tara
Dow, Steven
Barczak, Monica
Chase-Lansdale, P. Lindsay
Brooks-Gunn, Jeanne
Yoshikawa, Hirokazu
King, Christopher T.

Two-generation programs - which provide workforce development, skills training, and social capital development to parents while their children attend quality early childhood education programs - are a promising anti-poverty strategy and are gaining interest across the country. Early childhood education programs, like Head Start and Early Head Start, are central resources for improving the life opportunities of low-income children.