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Children and Youth

Child care in poor communities: Early learning effects of type, quality, and stability

Individual Author: 
Loeb, Susanna
Fuller, Bruce
Kagan, Sharon Lynn
Carrol, Bidemi

Young children in poor communities are spending more hours in nonparental care because of policy reforms and expansion of early childhood programs. Studies show positive effects of high-quality center-based care on children's cognitive growth. Yet, little is known about the effects of center care typically available in poor communities or the effects of home-based care. Using a sample of children who were between 12 and 42 months when their mothers entered welfare-to-work programs, this paper finds positive cognitive effects for children in center care.

Beyond the nuclear family: Trends in children living in shared households

Individual Author: 
Pilkauskas, Natasha V.
Cross, Christina

Using data from the 1996–2008 panels of the Survey of Income and Program Participation and the 2009–2016 American Community Survey, we examine trends in U.S. children living in shared households (living with adults beyond their nuclear (parent/ parent’s partner/sibling) family). We find that although the share of children who lived in a shared household increased over this period, the rise was nearly entirely driven by an increase in three-generation/multigenerational households (coresident grandparent(s), parent(s), and child).

Child care subsidy programs and child care choices: Effects on the number and type of arrangements

Individual Author: 
Pilarz, Alejandra Ros

Despite strong evidence that stable, high-quality child care promotes young children's development, low-income children are less likely to participate in formal and high-quality care than higher-income children and may be more likely to experience multiple, concurrent arrangements due to parents' economic and employment constraints. Child care subsidy programs increase low-income children's access to formal, center-based care, but little is known as to whether subsidies also influence the use of multiple arrangements.

Increasing access to quality child care for four priority populations: Challenges and opportunities with CCDBG reauthorization

Individual Author: 
Henly, Julia R.
Adams, Gina

In recent decades, policymakers have increasingly focused on the importance of high-quality child care and early education services in supporting the development of low-income children. Though highquality early care and education (ECE) can exist in any setting—including child care centers, family child care programs, and other home-based care arrangements—the emphasis on high-quality ECE services has often translated into a singular focus on investing public funds in formal settings, especially centerbased programs.

New measures of student poverty: Replacing free and reduced-price lunch status based on household forms with direct certification

Individual Author: 
Greenberg, Erica

Free and reduced-price lunch status has long been used as a proxy measure for student poverty. This brief offers a short history of school lunch and its recent decline as a measure of economic disadvantage. It then provides a primer on “direct certification,” the most promising alternative, which links student enrollment with public benefits data to directly assess students’ household income. Under direct certification, eligibility rules, application, and eligibility determination procedures of public benefits programs take on new importance in affecting counts of low-income students.

What explains the widespread material hardship among low-income families with children?

Individual Author: 
Karpman, Michael
Gonzalez, Dulce
Zuckerman, Stephen
Adams, Gina

Using data from the December 2017 round of the Urban Institute’s Well-Being and Basic Needs Survey, this brief assesses the prevalence of material hardship among parents living with children under age 19, how this varies by family income and ages of children, and the characteristics of low-income parents who report hardships. We then identify factors associated with an increased or reduced risk of material hardship among parents with low incomes, defined as family income below 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

African American adolescent engagement in the classroom and beyond: The roles of mother’s racial socialization and democratic-involved parenting

Individual Author: 
Smalls, Ciara

Previous research has explored how differential youth outcomes are associated with racial socialization and parenting style individually, but very little work has examined whether democratic-involved parenting style bolsters the positive link between racial messages and adolescent outcomes. The purpose of this study was to examine mothers’ use of democratic-involved parenting as a moderator of the association between racial socialization (e.g., racial pride, racial barrier, and self-worth messages) and youth engagement.

Developmental trajectories of acculturation: Links with family functioning and mental health in recent-immigrant Hispanic adolescents

Individual Author: 
Schwartz, Seth J.
Unger, Jennifer B.
Zamboanga, Byron L.
Córdova, David
Mason, Craig A.
Huang, Shi
Baezconde-Garbanati, Lourdes
Lorenzo-Blanco, Elma I.
Des Rosiers, Sabrina
Soto, Daniel W.
Villamar, Juan A.
Pattarroyo, Monica
Lizzi, Karina M.
Szapocznik, José

The present study was designed to examine acculturative changes, and their effects on mental health and family functioning, in recent-immigrant Hispanic adolescents. A sample of 302 Hispanic adolescents was assessed five times over a 2.5-year period. Participants completed measures of Hispanic and U.S. practices, collectivist and individualist values, and ethnic and U.S. identity at each timepoint. Baseline and Time 5 levels of mental health and family functioning were also assessed. Latent class growth analyses produced two-class solutions for practices, values, and identifications.

Parental engagement and barriers to participation in a community-based preventive intervention

Individual Author: 
Mendez, Julia L.
Carpenter, Johanna L.
LaForett, Doré R.
Cohen, Jeremy S.

This study examined parent characteristics and barriers to participation in a community-based preventive intervention with a sample of 201 parents from low-income and predominantly ethnic minority backgrounds. Person-centered analyses revealed five subgroups of parents who demonstrated variability in their parent characteristics, which included psychological resources and level of parental involvement in education.

Severe housing-cost burden and obesity among preschool-aged low-income children in Los Angeles County

Individual Author: 
Nobari, Tabashir Z.
Whaley, Shannon E.
Blumenberg, Evelyn
Prelip, Michael L.
Wang, May C.

Despite high rates of housing-cost burden in the United States, little is known regarding its impact on childhood obesity. In this article, we determine whether low-income 2-5-year-olds living in housing-cost burdened households are more likely to be obese and examine the potential moderators and behavioral and psychosocial mediators of this relationship. We used data from a triennial survey (2011, 2014) of a random sample of Los Angeles County participants of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (n = 2307).