Archive | March, 2014

Princeton University study: Four in ten infants lack strong parental attachments

31 Mar

There are no perfect people, no one has a perfect life and everyone makes mistakes. Unfortunately, children do not come with instruction manuals, which give specific instructions about how to relate to that particular child. Further, for many situations there is no one and only way to resolve a problem. What people can do is learn from their mistakes and the mistakes of others. Craig Playstead has assembled a top ten list of mistakes made by parents and they should be used as a starting point in thinking about your parenting style and your family’s dynamic.

1) Spoiling kids
2) Inadequate discipline
3) Failing to get involved at school
4) Praising mediocrity
5) Not giving kids enough responsibility
6) Not being a good spouse
7) Setting unreal expectations
8) Not teaching kids to fend for themselves
9) Pushing trends on kids
10) Not following through http://living.msn.com/family-parenting/10-big-mistakes-parents-make

Playstead also has some comments about stage parents. Adult behavior begins in childhood.

HelpGuide.org has some excellent resources about Attachment & Reactive Attachment Disorders:

Understanding attachment problems and disorders
VIDEO Creating Secure Infant Attachment http://www.helpguide.org/video/attachment_sd.htm
Children with attachment disorders or other attachment problems have difficulty connecting to others and managing their own emotions. This results in a lack of trust and self-worth, a fear of getting close to anyone, anger, and a need to be in control. A child with an attachment disorder feels unsafe and alone…
What causes reactive attachment disorder and other attachment problems?
Reactive attachment disorder and other attachment problems occur when children have been unable to consistently connect with a parent or primary caregiver. This can happen for many reasons:
• A baby cries and no one responds or offers comfort.
• A baby is hungry or wet, and they aren’t attended to for hours.
• No one looks at, talks to, or smiles at the baby, so the baby feels alone.
• A young child gets attention only by acting out or displaying other extreme behaviors.
• A young child or baby is mistreated or abused.
• Sometimes the child’s needs are met and sometimes they aren’t. The child never knows what to expect.
• The infant or young child is hospitalized or separated from his or her parents.
• A baby or young child is moved from one caregiver to another (can be the result of adoption, foster care, or the loss of a parent).
• The parent is emotionally unavailable because of depression, an illness, or a substance abuse problem.
As the examples show, sometimes the circumstances that cause the attachment problems are unavoidable, but the child is too young to understand what has happened and why. To a young child, it just feels like no one cares and they lose trust in others and the world becomes an unsafe place…
Signs and symptoms of insecure attachment in infants:
• Avoids eye contact
• Doesn’t smile
• Doesn’t reach out to be picked up
• Rejects your efforts to calm, soothe, and connect
• Doesn’t seem to notice or care when you leave them alone
• Cries inconsolably
• Doesn’t coo or make sounds
• Doesn’t follow you with his or her eyes
• Isn’t interested in playing interactive games or playing with toys
• Spend a lot of time rocking or comforting themselves
• Avoids eye contact
• Doesn’t smile
• Doesn’t reach out to be picked up
• Rejects your efforts to calm, soothe, and connect
• Doesn’t seem to notice or care when you leave them alone
• Cries inconsolably
• Doesn’t coo or make sounds
• Doesn’t follow you with his or her eyes
• Isn’t interested in playing interactive games or playing with toys
• Spend a lot of time rocking or comforting themselves
It’s important to note that the early symptoms of insecure attachment are similar to the early symptoms of other issues such as ADHD and autism. If you spot any of these warning signs, make an appointment with your pediatrician for a professional diagnosis of the problem….
Common signs and symptoms of reactive attachment disorder
• An aversion to touch and physical affection. Children with reactive attachment disorder often flinch, laugh, or even say “Ouch” when touched. Rather than producing positive feelings, touch and affection are perceived as a threat.
• Control issues. Most children with reactive attachment disorder go to great lengths to remain in control and avoid feeling helpless. They are often disobedient, defiant, and argumentative.
• Anger problems. Anger may be expressed directly, in tantrums or acting out, or through manipulative, passive-aggressive behavior. Children with reactive attachment disorder may hide their anger in socially acceptable actions, like giving a high five that hurts or hugging someone too hard.
• Difficulty showing genuine care and affection. For example, children with reactive attachment disorder may act inappropriately affectionate with strangers while displaying little or no affection towards their parents.
• An underdeveloped conscience. Children with reactive attachment disorder may act like they don’t have a conscience and fail to show guilt, regret, or remorse after behaving badly…. http://www.helpguide.org/mental/parenting_bonding_reactive_attachment_disorder.htm

See, Reactive attachment disorder http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/reactive-attachment-disorder/basics/symptoms/con-20032126 and Reactive Attachment Disorder http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/mental-health-reactive-attachment-disorder

Science Daily reported in the article, Four in 10 infants lack strong parental attachments:

In a study of 14,000 U.S. children, 40 percent lack strong emotional bonds — what psychologists call “secure attachment” — with their parents that are crucial to success later in life, according to a new report. The researchers found that these children are more likely to face educational and behavioral problems. In a report published by Sutton Trust, a London-based institute that has published more than 140 research papers on education and social mobility, researchers from Princeton University, Columbia University, the London School of Economics and Political Science and the University of Bristol found that infants under the age of three who do not form strong bonds with their mothers or fathers are more likely to be aggressive, defiant and hyperactive as adults. These bonds, or secure attachments, are formed through early parental care, such as picking up a child when he or she cries or holding and reassuring a child.
“When parents tune in to and respond to their children’s needs and are a dependable source of comfort, those children learn how to manage their own feeling and behaviors,” said Sophie Moullin, a joint doctoral candidate studying at Princeton’s Department of Sociology and the Office of Population Research, which is based at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. “These secure attachments to their mothers and fathers provide these children with a base from which they can thrive.”
Written by Moullin, Jane Waldfogel from Columbia University and the London School of Economics and Political Science and Elizabeth Washbrook from the University of Bristol, the report uses data collected by the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, a nationally representative U.S. study of 14,000 children born in 2001. The researchers also reviewed more than 100 academic studies.
Their analysis shows that about 60 percent of children develop strong attachments to their parents, which are formed through simple actions, such as holding a baby lovingly and responding to the baby’s needs. Such actions support children’s social and emotional development, which, in turn, strengthens their cognitive development, the researchers write. These children are more likely to be resilient to poverty, family instability, parental stress and depression. Additionally, if boys growing up in poverty have strong parental attachments, they are two and a half times less likely to display behavior problems at school.
The approximately 40 percent who lack secure attachments, on the other hand, are more likely to have poorer language and behavior before entering school. This effect continues throughout the children’s lives, and such children are more likely to leave school without further education, employment or training, the researchers write. Among children growing up in poverty, poor parental care and insecure attachment before age four strongly predicted a failure to complete school. Of the 40 percent who lack secure attachments, 25 percent avoid their parents when they are upset (because their parents are ignoring their needs), and 15 percent resist their parents because their parents cause them distress.
“This report clearly identifies the fundamental role secure attachment could have in narrowing that school readiness gap and improving children’s life chances. More support from health visitors, children’s centers and local authorities in helping parents improve how they bond with young children could play a role in narrowing the education gap,” said Conor Ryan, director of research at the Sutton Trust.
Susan Campbell, a professor of psychology at the University of Pittsburgh who studies social and emotional development in young children and infants, said insecure attachments emerge when primary caregivers are not “tuned in” to their infant’s social signals, especially their cries of distress during infancy.
“When helpless infants learn early that their cries will be responded to, they also learn that their needs will be met, and they are likely to form a secure attachment to their parents,” Campbell said. “However, when caregivers are overwhelmed because of their own difficulties, infants are more likely to learn that the world is not a safe place — leading them to become needy, frustrated, withdrawn or disorganized.”
The researchers argue that many parents — including middle-class parents — need more support to provide proper parenting, including family leave, home visits and income supports….
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140327123540.htm

Citation:

Four in 10 infants lack strong parent attachment
Date: March 27, 2014
Source: Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
Summary:
In a study of 14,000 US children, 40 percent lack strong emotional bonds — what psychologists call ‘secure attachment’ — with their parents that are crucial to success later in life, according to a new report. The researchers found that these children are more likely to face educational and behavioral problems.

Here is the press release from Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs:

Four in 10 Infants Lack Strong Parental Attachments
Mar 27, 2014
By: B. Rose Huber
Source: Woodrow Wilson School
Tags:
• Children, Demography, Education, Family, Gender, Psychology
PRINCETON, N.J.—In a study of 14,000 U.S. children, 40 percent lack strong emotional bonds — what psychologists call “secure attachment” — with their parents that are crucial to success later in life, according to a new report. The researchers found that these children are more likely to face educational and behavioral problems.
In a report published by Sutton Trust, a London-based institute that has published more than 140 research papers on education and social mobility, researchers from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University, the London School of Economics and Political Science and the University of Bristol found that infants under the age of three who do not form strong bonds with their mothers or fathers are more likely to be aggressive, defiant and hyperactive as adults. These bonds, or secure attachments, are formed through early parental care, such as picking up a child when he or she cries or holding and reassuring a child.

In a study of 14,000 U.S. children, 40 percent lack strong emotional bonds — what psychologists call “secure attachment” — with their parents that are crucial to success later in life.
“When parents tune in to and respond to their children’s needs and are a dependable source of comfort, those children learn how to manage their own feeling and behaviors,” said Sophie Moullin, a joint doctoral candidate studying at Princeton’s Department of Sociology and the Office of Population Research, which is based at the Woodrow Wilson School. “These secure attachments to their mothers and fathers provide these children with a base from which they can thrive.”
Written by Moullin, Jane Waldfogel from Columbia University and the London School of Economics and Political Science and Elizabeth Washbrook from the University of Bristol, the report uses data collected by the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, a nationally representative U.S. study of 14,000 children born in 2001. The researchers also reviewed more than 100 academic studies.
Their analysis shows that about 60 percent of children develop strong attachments to their parents, which are formed through simple actions, such as holding a baby lovingly and responding to the baby’s needs. Such actions support children’s social and emotional development, which, in turn, strengthens their cognitive development, the researchers write. These children are more likely to be resilient to poverty, family instability, parental stress and depression. Additionally, if boys growing up in poverty have strong parental attachments, they are two and a half times less likely to display behavior problems at school.
The approximately 40 percent who lack secure attachments, on the other hand, are more likely to have poorer language and behavior before entering school. This effect continues throughout the children’s lives, and such children are more likely to leave school without further education, employment or training, the researchers write. Among children growing up in poverty, poor parental care and insecure attachment before age four strongly predicted a failure to complete school. Of the 40 percent who lack secure attachments, 25 percent avoid their parents when they are upset (because their parents are ignoring their needs), and 15 percent resist their parents because their parents cause them distress.
“This report clearly identifies the fundamental role secure attachment could have in narrowing that school readiness gap and improving children’s life chances. More support from health visitors, children’s centers and local authorities in helping parents improve how they bond with young children could play a role in narrowing the education gap,” said Conor Ryan, director of research at the Sutton Trust.
Susan Campbell, a professor of psychology at the University of Pittsburgh who studies social and emotional development in young children and infants, said insecure attachments emerge when primary caregivers are not “tuned in” to their infant’s social signals, especially their cries of distress during infancy.
“When helpless infants learn early that their cries will be responded to, they also learn that their needs will be met, and they are likely to form a secure attachment to their parents,” Campbell said. “However, when caregivers are overwhelmed because of their own difficulties, infants are more likely to learn that the world is not a safe place — leading them to become needy, frustrated, withdrawn or disorganized.”
The researchers argue that many parents — including middle-class parents — need more support to provide proper parenting, including family leave, home visits and income supports.
“Targeted interventions can also be highly effective in helping parents develop the behaviors that foster secure attachment. Supporting families who are at risk for poor parenting ideally starts early — at birth or even before,” said Waldfogel, a co-author of the report and a professor of social work and public affairs at Columbia.
The report, “Baby Bonds: Parenting, attachment and a secure base for children,” was published March 21 by the Sutton Trust.

Roy H Lubit, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Caroly Pataki, MD write in the Medscape article, Attachment Disorders Treatment & Management about treatment options.

According to Lubit and Pataki, the treat approach is:

An appropriate treatment program for a child with multiple challenges requires the participation of several specialists.
Most of the treatment for reactive attachment disorder (RAD) and disinhibited social engagement disorder (DSED) is provided by primary caregivers (eg, parents or substitute parents) in their everyday interactions with the child. Ideally, these caregivers can rely on the expertise and advice of a mental health professional who is aware of the emotional needs of children, the phenomenology of attachment disruptions, and the need to repair and recreate the sense of security in the child. Referral to a mental health professional may be critical.
Pharmacologic treatment may be helpful for ancillary problems but not for the attachment disorders themselves. No specific diet is indicated; however, many children who have experienced disruptions and early neglect also have feeding disorders and may require treatment. Also, some children may have excessive appetite and thirst…. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/915447-treatment

Those with attachment disorders must be treated by competent professionals.

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National Labor Relations Board decision: Northwestern University football players can form union

27 Mar

Moi wrote in College football players want to form a union:
The idea of recognizing that “student” athletes are really low-paid employees of colleges and apprentices in the billion dollar sports industry would force college administrators, parents, and athletes to face some very hard truths. The NCAA has compiled a probability chart which shows just how few student athletes have a realistic change of even being drafted to play professional sports and then go on to have a successful professional career. See, http://www.collegesportsscholarships.com/percentage-high-school-athletes-ncaa-college.htm
Moi has about as much chance of playing for a professional team as the average kid with dreams of sports stardom.

Jorge Castillo wrote an intriguing report in the New York Times about historian Taylor Branch’s Atlantic article. In After Leaving Football, a Historian Emerges as an N.C.A.A. Critic, Castillo reports:

The October issue of The Atlantic magazine featured a 14,000-word cover story by Branch titled “The Shame of College Sports.” Its focus was the N.C.A.A., and the thesis Branch presented was that the organization was little more than a sham, exploiting athletes in revenue sports like football and men’s basketball to make hundreds of millions of dollars while expounding the virtues of amateurism. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/26/sports/ncaafootball/historian-taylor-branch-delivers-critical-view-of-ncaa.html?emc=eta1

The problem is literally 1000s of starry eyed kids and in some instance, stage parents who are willing to do whatever for a slim chance and wealth and stardom. Add to this mix the big business system of agents, coaches, and colleges who want to stay on the good side of powerful alumni.

Brad Wolverton of the Chronicle of Higher Education reported in the article, Northwestern U. Football Players Win Bid to Unionize:

Football players at Northwestern University cleared a significant hurdle on Wednesday, as a regional office of the National Labor Relations Board ruled that they qualified as employees with the right to unionize.
The decision, which the university said it would appeal, could lead to radical changes in how colleges treat big-time athletes. But the appeals process could take years to play out.
Some observers believe a union could allow athletes to share in television and licensing revenue and to secure long-term health benefits. Union leaders say their priority is to ensure the health and safety of players.
The unionization effort is one of several high-profile cases to challenge the NCAA’s amateur system. In interviews on Wednesday, several athletics officials said they believed the cases could prompt colleges to do more to help athletes, whether or not they ever go to trial.
Last week Jeffrey L. Kessler, a prominent sports-labor lawyer, filed a federal antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA, arguing that it had unfairly capped compensation for players in big-time football and basketball programs at the value of an athletic scholarship. And in June a federal antitrust case involving the use of athletes’ images and likenesses is set to go to trial in California.
Defending Amateurism
Legal experts say those cases have the potential to upend the business of major-college sports. But the NCAA has shown little willingness to negotiate change in its amateur model….
RELATED CONTENT
• Employees or Not? Graduate-Student Assistants Versus Scholarship Athletes http://chronicle.com/article/Employees-or-Not-/145573/
• ‘The Days of the Brown U. Ruling Are Numbered’ http://chronicle.com/article/The-Days-of-the-Brown-U/145575/
• Reactions to the Ruling on College Athletes’ Bid to Form a Labor Union http://chronicle.com/blogs/ticker/reactions-to-the-ruling-on-college-athletes-bid-to-form-a-labor-union/74937 http://chronicle.com/article/Northwestern-Football-Players/145579/?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en S

See, decision: http://www.insidehighered.com/sites/default/server_files/files/NU%20Decision%20and%20Direction%20of%20Election.pdf

Allie Grasgreen and Doug Lederman of Inside Higher Ed reported in the article, Football Players Win Union, for Now:

In what could be a landmark case, a regional office of the National Labor Relations Board on Wednesday backed a bid by football players at Northwestern University to unionize.
“I find that all grant-in-aid scholarship players for the Employer’s football team who have not exhausted their playing eligibility are ’employees’ under” the National Labor Relations Act, Peter Sung Ohr, director of the board’s Chicago regional office, wrote in his ruling. Ohr said walk-on players — those without scholarships — do not qualify as employees.
The ruling cites multiple factors in concluding that the scholarship football players at Northwestern are employees: that they perform services for the benefit of their employer and receive compensation (in the form of a scholarship) in exchange, and that scholarship players are “subject to the employer’s control in the performance of their duties as football players.”
Ohr also differentiated the case of Northwestern’s football players from those of graduate teaching assistants at Brown University (in which the NLRB ruled for the university in 2004) because “the players’ football-related duties are unrelated to their academic studies unlike the graduate assistants whose teaching and research duties were inextricably tied to their graduate degree requirements.”
“The players spend 50 to 60 hours per week on their football duties during a one-month training camp prior to the start of the academic year and an additional 40 to 50 hours per week on those duties during the three or four month football season,” the NLRB ruling said. “Not only is this more hours than many undisputed full-time employees work at their jobs, it is also many more hours than the players spend on their studies.”
The decision is historic in its own right, but coupled with controversies surrounding head trauma, lawsuits regarding athletes’ rights (or lack thereof) to profit off their own image, and a new challenge to the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s antitrust exemption, some experts believe it could contribute to the mounting assault on the underlying viability of the NCAA’s century-old amateur model….
The ruling applies only to private colleges, so athletes at public institutions would have to petition at the state level should they seek to unionize. But if the full board affirms the regional decision, its basis could ultimately be used by athletes at other universities as grounds to seek unionization, said William A. Herbert, executive director of the National Center for the Study of Collective Bargaining in Higher Education and the Professions at the City University of New York’s Hunter College.
“This is an important issue for both NCAA players and universities, along with graduate students throughout the country,” Herbert said. “This case may present, for the NLRB, an opportunity to re-examine the decision of Brown University.”
Ohr noted in his decision that the Brown case, in which graduate teaching and research assistants at private institutions were denied the right to unionize, should not apply to the Northwestern athletes. Northwestern administrators had cited Brown University vs. NLRB in saying that scholarship athletes are not employees.
That decision said graduate students were not employees because they are scholarship students, they play a role in graduate education and have a unique relationship with faculty. In other words, their role as teaching assistants was an educational one. Football players, on the other hand, must fulfill many duties completely unrelated to their education, Ohr said.
Michael A. Olivas, director of the Institute of Higher Education Law and Governance at the University of Houston, said he doesn’t think this issues will ultimately be decided through a series of court rulings.
“I think it’s going to come by Congress looking at this and legislating, because they’re the only ones that can really consider this in the context of antitrust law, employment law, labor law, the variety of very specific subfields that are implicated,” Olivas said. “You can’t just do it on a sort of case-by-case basis….” http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2014/03/26/nlrb-office-backs-union-northwestern-football-players#.UzPFLSTVoLc.email

Maybe it’s time to look at athletes as apprentices for the sports business. The question then becomes how to adequately compensate fodder for the big business, big money sports machine? Most of the kids who are part of the process will never see a payoff in sports. Maybe the compensation should be an education trust fund for college athletes so that when they are perhaps more mature and more realistic about career prospects, they have the resources for a real education.

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UCLA Civil Rights Project study: Segregated schools in New York, yup those liberals love Black folk

26 Mar

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD FART: Joy Resmovits of Huffington Post reported in the article, The Nation’s Most Segregated Schools Aren’t Where You’d Think They’d Be:

NEW YORK — The nation’s most segregated schools aren’t in the deep south — they’re in New York, according to a report released Tuesday by the University of California, Los Angeles’ Civil Rights Project.
That means that in 2009, black and Latino students in New York “had the highest concentration in intensely-segregated public schools,” in which white students made up less than 10 percent of enrollment and “the lowest exposure to white students,” wrote John Kucsera, a UCLA researcher, and Gary Orfield, a UCLA professor and the project’s director. “For several decades, the state has been more segregated for blacks than any Southern state, though the South has a much higher percent of African American students,” the authors wrote. The report, “New York State’s Extreme School Segregation,” looked at 60 years of data up to 2010, from various demographics and other research.
There’s also a high level of “double segregation,” Orfield said in an interview, as students are increasingly isolated not only by race, but also by income: the typical black or Latino student in New York state attends a school with twice as many low-income students as their white peers. That concentration of poverty brings schools disadvantages that mixed-income schools often lack: health issues, mobile populations, entrenched violence and teachers who come from the least selective training programs. “They don’t train kids to work in a society that’s diverse by race and class,” he said. “There’s a systematically unequal set of demands on those schools.”
While segregated schools are located throughout New York state, the segregation of schools in New York City — the country’s most heterogeneous area — contributes to the state’s standing. Of the city’s 32 Community School Districts, 19 had 10 percent or fewer white students in 2010. All school districts in the Bronx fell into that category. More than half of New Yorkers are black or Latino, but most neighborhoods have little diversity — and recent changes in school enrollment policies, spurred by the creation of many charter schools, haven’t helped, Orfield argues…. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/26/new-york-schools-segregated_n_5034455.html

Here is the press release from UCLA:

CRP Researchers Reaffirm Findings of Increasing Segregation
Date Published:March 13, 2014

Several researchers have recently published articles claiming that school segregation has actually not increased in recent decades, as we have reported in our publications. It turns out that these researchers preferred to measure something else—the randomness of distribution of four racial groups across metropolitan areas. This measure has never been the goal of desegregation policies, nor the way in which progress was measured in civil rights law and enforcement.
Related Documents
• Statement Reaffirming Findings on School Segregation
Civil Rights Project Researchers Reaffirm Findings:
School Segregation Increasing in Recent Decades http://civilrightsproject.ucla.edu/news/news-and-announcements/news-2014/crp-researchers-reaffirm-findings-of-increasing-segregation/statement-Civil-Rights-Project-Researchers.pdf
March 13, 2014
Several researchers have recently published articles claiming that school segregation has actually not increased in recent decades, as we have reported in our publications. It turns out that these researchers have not disputed our data, which shows the level of isolation by race and poverty experienced by African American and Latino students. They have, however, preferred to measure something else—the randomness of distribution of four racial groups across metropolitan areas. This measure has never been the goal of desegregation policies, nor the way in which progress was measured in civil rights law and enforcement.
Traditionally desegregation progress has been measured by increased diversity in schools that were formerly of one racial group, and by the percent of black and Latino students concentrated in intensely segregated or substantially integrated schools. These are the central measures we have used. The researchers looking at randomness of multiracial groups conclude that diversity at a metropolitan level has not increased. By carefully examining the Washington metro area, we demonstrate that their measure shows progress. But statistics on the actual schools attended by black and Latino students, our measure, shows a clear increase in isolation from whites and middle class students.
CRP conducted a brief analysis, which foreshadows a more extensive forthcoming report, and found that the randomness statistics are interesting, but they do not sustain the claim that segregation has not increased. Furthermore, the progress they report is often misleading, because the randomness method can produce false negatives and false positives in terms of the segregation or integration of students and schools.
Our analysis explains the dispute and the basis for the conclusions in our reports.

Moi wrote about the intersection of race and class in Michael Petrilli’s decision: An ed reformer confronts race and class when choosing a school for his kids. It is worth reviewing that post. https://drwilda.com/tag/class-segregation/
Moi wrote about the intersection of race and class in education in Race, class, and education in America:
Many educators have long recognized that the impact of social class affects both education achievement and life chances after completion of education. There are two impacts from diversity, one is to broaden the life experience of the privileged and to raise the expectations of the disadvantaged. Social class matters in not only other societies, but this one as well.

A few years back, the New York Times did a series about social class in America. That series is still relevant. Janny Scott and David Leonhardt’s overview, Shadowy Lines That Still Divide describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Social Class https://drwilda.com/2011/11/07/race-class-and-education-in-america/

Lindsey Layton wrote the Washington Post article, Schools dilemma for gentrifiers: Keep their kids urban, or move to suburbia?

When his oldest son reached school age, Michael Petrilli faced a dilemma known to many middle-class parents living in cities they helped gentrify: Should the family flee to the homogenous suburbs for excellent schools or stay urban for diverse but often struggling schools?
Petrilli, who lived in Takoma Park with his wife and two sons, was torn, but he knew more than most people about the choice before him. Petrilli is an education expert, a former official in the Education Department under George W. Bush and executive vice president at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a right-leaning education think tank.
He set out to learn as much as he could about the risks and benefits of socioeconomically diverse schools, where at least 20 percent of students are eligible for the federal free or reduced-price lunch program. And then he wrote about it.
The result is “The Diverse Schools Dilemma,” which is being published and released next month by the Fordham Institute.
Petrilli said he wanted his son to have friends from all backgrounds because he believes that cultural literacy will prepare him for success in a global society.
But he worried that his son might get lost in a classroom that has a high percentage of poor children, that teachers would be focused on the struggling children and have less time for their more privileged peers.
As Petrilli points out in the book, this dilemma doesn’t exist for most white, middle-class families. The vast majority — 87 percent — of white students attend majority white schools, Petrilli says, even though they make up just about 50 percent of the public school population.
And even in urban areas with significant African American and Latino populations, neighborhood schools still tend to be segregated by class, if not by race. In the Washington region, less than 3 percent of white public school students attend schools where poor children are the majority, according to Petrilli.
Gentrification poses new opportunities for policymakers to desegregate schools, Petrilli argues….
In the end, Petrilli moved from his Takoma Park neighborhood school — diverse Piney Branch Elementary, which is 33 percent low-income — to Wood Acres Elementary in Bethesda, where 1 percent of the children are low-income, 2 percent are black and 5 percent are Hispanic. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/schools-dilemma-for-urban-gentrifiers-keep-their-kids-urban-or-move-to-suburbia/2012/10/14/02083b6c-131b-11e2-a16b-2c110031514a_story.html

Moi tackled the issue of segregation in Good or bad? Charter schools and segregation:
If one wants to make people’s heads explode, then mention Black conservative, Thomas Sowell. Better yet, quote him. Is the sound moi hears little explosions all over the blogosphere? Sowell has written an interesting piece, The Education of Minority Children©

While there are examples of schools where this happens in our own time– both public and private, secular and religious– we can also go back nearly a hundred years and find the same phenomenon. Back in 1899, in Washington, D. C., there were four academic public high schools– one black and three white.1 In standardized tests given that year, students in the black high school averaged higher test scores than students in two of the three white high schools.2
This was not a fluke. It so happens that I have followed 85 years of the history of this black high school– from 1870 to 1955 –and found it repeatedly equalling or exceeding national norms on standardized tests.3 In the 1890s, it was called The M Street School and after 1916 it was renamed Dunbar High School but its academic performances on standardized tests remained good on into the mid-1950s.
When I first published this information in 1974, those few educators who responded at all dismissed the relevance of these findings by saying that these were “middle class” children and therefore their experience was not “relevant” to the education of low-income minority children. Those who said this had no factual data on the incomes or occupations of the parents of these children– and I did.
The problem, however, was not that these dismissive educators did not have evidence. The more fundamental problem was that they saw no need for evidence. According to their dogmas, children who did well on standardized tests were middle class. These children did well on such tests, therefore they were middle class.
Lack of evidence is not the problem. There was evidence on the occupations of the parents of the children at this school as far back in the early 1890s. As of academic year 1892-93, there were 83 known occupations of the parents of the children attending The M Street School. Of these occupations, 51 were laborers and one was a doctor.4 That doesn’t sound very middle class to me.
Over the years, a significant black middle class did develop in Washington and no doubt most of them sent their children to the M Street School or to Dunbar High School, as it was later called. But that is wholly different from saying that most of the children at that school came from middle-class homes.
During the later period, for which I collected data, there were far more children whose mothers were maids than there were whose fathers were doctors. For many years, there was only one academic high school for blacks in the District of Columbia and, as late as 1948, one-third of all black youngsters attending high school in Washington attended Dunbar High School. So this was not a “selective” school in the sense in which we normally use that term– there were no tests to take to get in, for example– even though there was undoubtedly self-selection in the sense that students who were serious went to Dunbar and those who were not had other places where they could while away their time, without having to meet high academic standards. (A vocational high school for blacks was opened in Washington in 1902).5
A spot check of attendance records and tardiness records showed that The M Street School at the turn of the century and Dunbar High School at mid-century had less absenteeism and less tardiness than the white high schools in the District of Columbia at those times. The school had a tradition of being serious, going back to its founders and early principals.
Among these early principals was the first black woman to receive a college degree in the United States– Mary Jane Patterson from Oberlin College, class of 1862. At that time, Oberlin had different academic curriculum requirements for women and men. Latin, Greek and mathematics were required in “the gentlemen’s course,” as it was called, but not in the curriculum for ladies. Miss Patterson, however, insisted on taking Latin, Greek, and mathematics anyway. Not surprisingly, in her later 12 years as principal of the black high school in Washington during its formative years, she was noted for “a strong, forceful personality,” for “thoroughness,’ and for being “an indefatigable worker.” Having this kind of person shaping the standards and traditions of the school in its early years undoubtedly had something to do with its later success.
Other early principals included the first black man to graduate from Harvard, class of 1870. Four of the school’s first eight principals graduated from Oberlin and two from Harvard. Because of restricted academic opportunities for blacks, Dunbar had three Ph.Ds among its teachers in the 1920s.
One of the other educational dogmas of our times is the notion that standardized tests do not predict future performances for minority children, either in academic institutions or in life. Innumerable scholarly studies have devastated this claim intellectually,6 though it still survives and flourishes politically.
But the history of this black high school in Washington likewise shows a pay-off for solid academic preparation and the test scores that result from it. Over the entire 85-year history of academic success of this school, from 1870 to 1955, most of its 12,000 graduates went on to higher education.7 This was very unusual for either black or white high-school graduates during this era. Because these were low-income students, most went to a local free teachers college but significant numbers won scholarships to leading colleges and universities elsewhere.8
Some M Street School graduates began going to Harvard and other academically elite colleges in the early twentieth century. As of 1916, there were nine black students, from the entire country, attending Amherst College. Six were from the M Street School. During the period from 1918 to 1923, graduates of this school went on to earn 25 degrees from Ivy League colleges, Amherst, Williams, and Wesleyan. Over the period from 1892 to 1954, Amherst admitted 34 graduates of the M Street School and Dunbar. Of these, 74 percent graduated and more than one-fourth of these graduates were Phi Beta Kappas.9
No systematic study has been made of the later careers of the graduates of this school. However, when the late black educator Horace Mann Bond studied the backgrounds of blacks with Ph.D.s, he discovered that more of them had graduated from M Street-Dunbar than from any other black high school in the country.
The first blacks to graduate from West Point and Annapolis also came from this school. So did the first black full professor at a major university (Allison Davis at the University of Chicago). So did the first black federal judge, the first black general, the first black Cabinet member, the first black elected to the United States Senate since Reconstruction, and the discoverer of a method for storing blood plasma. During World War II, when black military officers were rare, there were more than two dozen graduates of M Street or Dunbar High School holding ranks ranging from major to brigadier general.10
All this contradicts another widely-believed notion– that schools do not make much difference in children’s academic or career success because income and family background are much larger influences. If the schools themselves do not differ very much from one another, then of course it will not make much difference which one a child attends. But, when they differ dramatically, the results can also differ dramatically.
This was not the only school to achieve success with minority children. But, before turning to some other examples, it may be useful to consider why and how this 85-year history of unusual success was abruptly turned into typical failure, almost overnight, by the politics of education.
As we all know, 1954 was the year of the famous racial desegregation case of Brown v. Board of Education. Those of us old enough to remember those days also know of the strong resistance to school desegregation in many white communities, including Washington, D. C. Ultimately a political compromise was worked out. In order to comply with the law, without having a massive shift of students, the District’s school officials decided to turn all public schools in Washington into neighborhood schools.
http://www.tsowell.com/speducat.html

Sowell ends his article with the following thoughts:

Put bluntly, failure attracts more money than success. Politically, failure becomes a reason to demand more money, smaller classes, and more trendy courses and programs, ranging from “black English” to bilingualism and “self-esteem.” Politicians who want to look compassionate and concerned know that voting money for such projects accomplishes that purpose for them and voting against such programs risks charges of mean-spiritedness, if not implications of racism.
We cannot recapture the past and there is much in the past that we should not want to recapture. But neither is it irrelevant. If nothing else, history shows what can be achieved, even in the face of adversity. We have no excuse for achieving less in an era of greater material abundance and greater social opportunities

The discussion has come full circle because the discussion centers on segregation and charter schools. This brings us to the thought that liberals are loving Black folk to death.

A couple of thoughts:

1. Would these same students be attending segregated schools if the schools were public, because most cities have segregated housing patterns?
2. Does it matter that children attend segregated elementary schools if they receive a good basic education and are qualified to attend the college of their choice or vocational school of their choice because they graduated from high school with good basic skills?
3. Is there anything inherently wrong with a segregated school if it is not the result of a legal mandate which requires segregation?

Fact of the matter is, liberals like poor folk in theory, just not in fact.

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University of Washington study: Gang membership effects linger after leaving a gang

25 Mar

Among the statistics from the National Gang Center are:

9. Are today’s gangs different from gangs in the past?
One of the major differences between modern-day gangs and gangs of the past is their greater use of firearms. Modern-day street gangs recruit youths who possess firearms, and gang involvement promotes the use of them (Lizotte et al., 2000; Sheley and Wright, 1995). In a Rochester, New York, study, the rate of gun carrying was about ten times higher for gang members than it was for nongang juvenile offenders (Thornberry et al., 2003). Gang members who owned and/or carried guns also committed about ten times more violent crimes than one would expect from their numbers in the sample population. In the NYGS, jurisdictions experiencing higher levels of gang violence—evidenced by reports of multiple gang-related homicides over survey years—were significantly more likely than those experiencing no gang homicides to report that firearms were “used often” by gang members in assault crimes (47 percent vs. 4 percent of the jurisdictions, respectively) (Egley et al., 2006).
The growth of prison gangs is another noted difference between the gangs of the past and the current era. Although gangs were first reported in state prisons in the 1950s (Fleisher, 2006), the growth of prison gangs is a fairly recent development—over the past couple of decades. Yet we have only “rudimentary knowledge of prison gangs as social groups operating inside prisons and of the interplay between street gangs and prison gangs” (Fleisher and Decker, 2001, p. 2). The most frequently identified prison gangs (which prison officials and others prefer to call “security threat groups”) in both prison and jail settings included the Crips, Bloods, Gangster Disciples, Latin Kings, and Aryan Brotherhood. The Mexican Mafia, La Nuestra Familia, the Black Guerilla Family, and the Texas Syndicate have also been identified as dominant prison gangs (National Alliance of Gang Investigators, 2005, p. 6).
10. What proportion of adolescents join gangs?
In the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, a nationally representative sample of 9,000 youth between the ages of 12 and 16, 8 percent had belonged to a gang by age 17, (Snyder and Sickmund, 2006, p. 70). However, only 3 percent indicated that they were gang members in the first survey year, 1997, when the sample averaged 14 years of age (Bjerregaard, Forthcoming, p. 15).
Of course, the proportion of youth who join a gang is higher in gang-problem cities. For example, a survey of nearly 6,000 eighth graders conducted in 11 cities known to be gang-problem localities found that 11 percent were currently gang members (17 percent said they had belonged to a gang at some point in their young lives) (Esbensen and Deschenes, 1998). It should also be noted that the prevalence of gang membership varies by locality and is typically higher in areas with longer-standing gang problems. Thus, gang membership is yet higher among representative samples of high-risk youth in large cities, ranging from 14 percent to 30 percent in Denver, Colorado; Seattle, Washington; and Rochester, New York (Thornberry, 1998; Thornberry et al., 2004). Additionally, while larger cities primarily report a larger percentage of adult-aged gang members, other areas such as smaller cities and rural counties predominately report juvenile-aged gang members (National Youth Gang Center, 2009, see Age of Gang Members and Age of Gang Members by Area Type).
11. What is the racial and ethnic composition of gangs?
In the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (see FAQ No. 10), racial ethnic differences in the proportion who joined gangs was not as large as previous research had suggested. About 12 percent of Hispanic and black youth, respectively, reported having joined a gang by age 17, versus 7 percent of white youth (Snyder and Sickmund, 2006, p. 70).
According to law enforcement agencies in the 2007 NYGS, nearly half (49 percent) of all documented gang members are Hispanic/Latino, 35 percent are African American/black, and 9 percent are Caucasian/white (National Youth Gang Center, 2009, see Race/Ethnicity of Gang Members). However, the racial composition of gangs varies considerably by locality. For example, prevalence rates of white gang membership are lowest in larger cities (8 percent) but significantly higher in other area types, including rural counties (17 percent), where the rate is more than twice as high (National Youth Gang Center, 2009, see Race/Ethnicity of Gang Members by Area Type). In short, the demographic composition of gangs is an extension of the social and economic characteristics of the larger community.
12. Is female gang involvement increasing?
In the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (see FAQ No. 10), male versus female differences in the proportion who joined gangs was not as large as previous research had suggested. The male-to-female ratio in this national sample was approximately 2:1 (11 percent of males versus 6 percent of females) (Snyder and Sickmund, 2006, p. 70). Also, in a 15-city purposive sample, almost equal proportions of boys (8.8 percent) and girls (7.8 percent) self-reported gang membership (Esbensen et al., 2008). By comparison, while law enforcement agencies report widespread documentation of gangs with female members (National Youth Gang Center, 2009, see Gangs With Female Members), proportionally few of the gang members documented by law enforcement are female (National Youth Gang Center, 2009, see Gender of Gang Members).
Concerns of gang membership among girls have received increased scholarly attention (Moore and Hagedorn, 2001). During early adolescence, roughly one-third of all gang members are female (Esbensen and Deschenes, 1998; Esbensen and Huizinga, 1993; Esbensen and Winfree, 1998; Gottfredson and Gottfredson, 2001; Thornberry et al., 2003), but studies show that females leave gangs at an earlier age than males (Gottfredson and Gottfredson, 2001; Thornberry et al., 2003). Gender-mixed gangs are also more commonly reported now than in the past. Furthermore, emerging research has also documented that the gender composition of a gang is importantly associated with gang delinquency rates. In one study, females in all- or majority-female gangs exhibited the lowest delinquency rates, and males and females in majority-male gangs exhibited the highest delinquency rates (including higher rates than males in all-male gangs) (Peterson et al., 2001).
13. What proportion of serious and violent crime is attributable to gang members?
Because of the commonly known and widespread limitations of officially recorded data on gang crime (see FAQ No. 5), other data sources are typically used to explore this issue. Studies of large urban samples show that gang members are responsible for a large proportion of all violent offenses committed during the adolescent years. Rochester gang members (30 percent of the sample) self-reported committing 68 percent of all adolescent violent offenses; in Seattle, gang members (15 percent of the sample) self-reported committing 85 percent of adolescent robberies; and in Denver, gang members (14 percent of the sample) self-reported committing 79 percent of all serious violent adolescent offenses (Thornberry, 1998; Thornberry et al., 2004). Somewhat conversely, in less high-risk areas, research has yet to firmly establish that gang members are disproportionally responsible for serious and violent crimes.
14. What is the impact of gang membership on individual offending levels?
Gang membership is a strong predictor of individual violence in adolescence and, in one study, has been observed to be an even more powerful predictor than two of the most highly regarded factors (i.e., delinquent peer association and prior violence) (Thornberry, 1998; see also Battin-Pearson et al., 1998). Survey research has consistently demonstrated that individuals are significantly more criminally active during periods of active gang membership, particularly in serious and violent offenses, and that prolonged periods of gang involvement have a way of increasing the “criminal embeddedness” of members (Thornberry et al., 2003; Thornberry et al., 2004). “Associates” of gang members also have elevated offense rates (Curry et al., 2002)….
15. What are the major risk factors for gang membership?
Risk factors that predispose many youths to gang membership are also linked to a variety of adolescent problem behaviors, including serious violence and delinquency. The major risk factor domains are individual characteristics, family conditions, school experiences and performance, peer group influences, and the community context. Risk factors predictive of gang membership include prior and/or early involvement in delinquency, especially violence and alcohol/drug use; poor family management and problematic parent-child relations; low school attachment and achievement and negative labeling by teachers; association with aggressive peers and peers who engage in delinquency; and neighborhoods in which large numbers of youth are in trouble and in which drugs and firearms are readily available (Howell and Egley, 2005; see also Esbensen, 2000; Hill et al., 2001; Thornberry, 1998; Wyrick and Howell, 2004). The accumulation of risk factors greatly increases the likelihood of gang involvement, just as it does for other problem behaviors. The presence of risk factors in multiple risk-factor domains appears to increase the likelihood of gang involvement even more (Thornberry et al., 2003). A complete enumeration of risk factors for juvenile delinquency and gang involvement and data indicators can be accessed at the National Gang Center (NGC) Web site (http://www.nationalgangcenter.gov/About/Strategic-Planning-Tool)…. https://www.nationalgangcenter.gov/About/FAQ#q9

See, Gangs http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/investigate/vc_majorthefts/gangs

Science Daily reported about a University of Washington gang study in the article, Negative effects of joining a gang last long after gang membership ends:

University of Washington researchers have found that joining a gang in adolescence has significant consequences in adulthood beyond criminal behavior, even after a person leaves the gang. The research is published in the American Journal of Public Health.
“It turns out that, like violence, gang membership is as much a public health problem as a criminal justice problem,” said Karl Hill, study co-author and research associate professor in the School of Social Work. “Joining a gang in the teens had enduring consequences on health and well-being.”
The Seattle Social Development Project, which was founded by study co-author J. David Hawkins, followed 808 fifth-grade students from 18 elementary schools serving high-crime neighborhoods in Seattle, beginning in 1985. More than half of the students came from low-income families. Participants were interviewed every year until the age of 18, then every three years until the age of 33.
According to lead author Amanda Gilman, a doctoral candidate in the School of Social Work, joining a gang served as a turning point, creating consequences that cascaded into other areas of life for years afterward.
“Very few of them reported still being in a gang at age 27. The vast majority had left a long time ago, but the consequences stuck with them long-term,” Gilman said. Researchers used 23 risk factors to calculate a child’s propensity for joining a gang, and then compared 173 youth who had joined a gang with 173 who did not but showed a similar propensity for doing so, so that the only difference between the two groups was gang membership. The average age of joining a gang was just under 15 years old. No one in this study reported joining a gang after the age of 19, and the majority (60 percent) were in a gang for three years or less.
The 23 variables used to match the groups included individual factors such as antisocial beliefs, alcohol and marijuana use, violent behavior and hyperactivity; family factors such as poverty, family structure, sibling behavior and parent pro-violent attitudes; school factors such as academic aspiration and achievement; neighborhood factors such as the availability of marijuana and neighborhood kids in trouble; and whether the child associated with friends who engaged in problem behaviors. Researchers measured three areas of adult functioning at age 33: illegal behavior, education and occupational attainment, and physical and mental health. Those who joined a gang in adolescence were nearly three times more likely between ages 27 and 33 to report committing a crime, more than three times more likely to receive income from illegal sources, and more than twice as likely to have been incarcerated in the previous year.
Former gang members also were nearly three times more likely to have drug-abuse issues, were almost twice as likely to say they were in poor health, and twice as likely to be receiving public assistance. They were also half as likely to graduate from high school.
Gilman hopes the study will motivate schools and communities to develop and implement research-based strategies to prevent children from joining gangs, in the hopes of not only reducing crime, but increasing graduation rates and reducing physical and mental health costs….
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140313172945.htm

Citation:

Negative effects of joining a gang last long after gang membership ends

Date: March 13, 2014

Source: University of Washington
Summary:
Joining a gang in adolescence has significant consequences in adulthood beyond criminal behavior, even after a person leaves the gang. Former gang members are more likely to be in poor health, receiving government assistance and struggling with drug abuse than someone who never joined a gang.
Journal Reference:
1. Amanda B. Gilman, Karl G. Hill, J. David Hawkins. Long-Term Consequences of Adolescent Gang Membership for Adult Functioning. American Journal of Public Health, 2014; e1 DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2013.301821

Here is the press release from the University of Washington:

Mar 24 at 1:49 PM
March 13, 2014
Negative effects of joining a gang last long after gang membership ends
Doree Armstrong
News and Information
Posted under: News Releases, Research, Social Science
Imagine two children, both with the exact same risk factors for joining a gang. As teenagers, one joins a gang, the other doesn’t. Even though the first teen eventually leaves the gang, years later he or she is not only at significantly higher risk of being incarcerated and receiving illegal income, but is also less likely to have finished high school and more likely to be in poor health, receiving government assistance or struggling with drug abuse.
University of Washington researchers have found that joining a gang in adolescence has significant consequences in adulthood beyond criminal behavior, even after a person leaves the gang. The research is published in the American Journal of Public Health.
“It turns out that, like violence, gang membership is as much a public health problem as a criminal justice problem,” said Karl Hill, study co-author and research associate professor in the School of Social Work. “Joining a gang in the teens had enduring consequences on health and well-being.”
The Seattle Social Development Project, which was founded by study co-author J. David Hawkins, followed 808 fifth-grade students from 18 elementary schools serving high-crime neighborhoods in Seattle, beginning in 1985. More than half of the students came from low-income families. Participants were interviewed every year until the age of 18, then every three years until the age of 33.
According to lead author Amanda Gilman, a doctoral candidate in the School of Social Work, joining a gang served as a turning point, creating consequences that cascaded into other areas of life for years afterward.
“Very few of them reported still being in a gang at age 27. The vast majority had left a long time ago, but the consequences stuck with them long-term,” Gilman said.
Researchers used 23 risk factors to calculate a child’s propensity for joining a gang, and then compared 173 youth who had joined a gang with 173 who did not but showed a similar propensity for doing so, so that the only difference between the two groups was gang membership. The average age of joining a gang was just under 15 years old. No one in this study reported joining a gang after the age of 19, and the majority (60 percent) were in a gang for three years or less.
The 23 variables used to match the groups included individual factors such as antisocial beliefs, alcohol and marijuana use, violent behavior and hyperactivity; family factors such as poverty, family structure, sibling behavior and parent pro-violent attitudes; school factors such as academic aspiration and achievement; neighborhood factors such as the availability of marijuana and neighborhood kids in trouble; and whether the child associated with friends who engaged in problem behaviors. Researchers measured three areas of adult functioning at age 33: illegal behavior, education and occupational attainment, and physical and mental health.
Those who joined a gang in adolescence were nearly three times more likely between ages 27 and 33 to report committing a crime, more than three times more likely to receive income from illegal sources, and more than twice as likely to have been incarcerated in the previous year.
Former gang members also were nearly three times more likely to have drug-abuse issues, were almost twice as likely to say they were in poor health, and twice as likely to be receiving public assistance. They were also half as likely to graduate from high school.
Gilman hopes the study will motivate schools and communities to develop and implement research-based strategies to prevent children from joining gangs, in the hopes of not only reducing crime, but increasing graduation rates and reducing physical and mental health costs.
Hill said everyone can be involved in gang prevention in their own way, by reducing the 23 variables shown to be risk factors. “If you’re a parent, manage your family well. If you’re a community member, be involved in kids’ lives. If you’re a teacher, engage your kids and recognize good work. We can’t solve all of the risks kids are exposed to alone, but we can if we work together,” he said.
# # #
Gilman can be reached at abg5@uw.edu. Hill can be reached at khill@uw.edu or 206-685-3859.
This research was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (grant numbers R01DA003721, R01DA009679 and R01DA024411-03-04), the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (grant 21548), and the National Institute on Mental Health (grant 5 T32 MH20010).

Catharine Paddock, PhD wrote about the 23 factors of gang membership in the medical News Today article, Teen gang membership can harm adult years.

According to Paddock:

Using 23 risk factors, the researchers identified children likely to join a gang
From the interviews, and using a cluster of 23 risk factors, the researchers could identify children with a propensity for joining a gang. They then compared 173 teenagers who did join a gang with 173 who did not, but who also matched the same risk factors. So the only difference between the two groups was gang membership.
The 23 risk factors for making it likely that a child would join a gang were:
 Individual factors: such as having antisocial beliefs, use of alcohol and marijuana, hyperactive and violent behavior
 Family factors: including poverty, sibling behavior, parents with pro-violent attitudes, and family structure
 Neighborhood factors: including extent to which neighborhood kids were in trouble and the availability of marijuana
 Social factors: such as whether the child associated with friends who engaged in problem behaviors
 School factors: such as academic aspiration and achievement.
The researchers assessed three factors in adulthood when the participants reached the age of 33:
 Education and occupational achievement
 Illegal behavior
 Mental and physical health.
Former gang members more likely to experience negative consequences in adult life
They found adult participants who were former members of teen gangs, were nearly three times more likely, between the ages of 27 and 33, to report engaging in criminal activity, more than three times more likely to be in receipt of illegal income, and more than twice as likely to have been in jail in the previous year.
Former teen gang members were also nearly three times more likely to struggle with drug abuse, twice as likely to report poor health, and twice as likely to be in receipt of welfare. They were also half as likely to complete their high school education.
The average age at which a child joined a gang was just under 15. None of the participants reported joining after the age of 19, and 60% reported being in a gang for a maximum of 3 years….. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/274219.php

Clearly, preventing induction into gangs is crucial to minimizing both individual and community damage from gang membership.

Resources:

A Dozen Things Students Can Do to Stop School Violence http://www.sacsheriff.com/crime_prevention/documents/school_safety_04.cfm

A Dozen Things. Teachers Can Do To Stop School Violence.
http://www.ncpc.org/cms-upload/ncpc/File/teacher12.pdf

Preventing School Violence: A Practical Guide
http://www.indiana.edu/~safeschl/psv.pdf

Related:
Violence against teachers is becoming a bigger issue
https://drwilda.com/2013/11/29/violence-against-teachers-is-becoming-a-bigger-issue/

Hazing remains a part of school culture
https://drwilda.com/2013/10/09/hazing-remains-a-part-of-school-culture/

FEMA issues Guide for Developing High-Quality School Emergency Operations Plans
https://drwilda.com/2013/07/08/fema-issues-guide-for-developing-high-quality-school-emergency-operations-plans/

Study: 1 in 3 teens are victims of dating violence
https://drwilda.com/2013/08/05/study-1-in-3-teens-are-victims-of-dating-violence/

Pediatrics article: Sexual abuse prevalent in teen population
https://drwilda.com/2013/10/10/pediatrics-article-sexual-abuse-prevalent-in-teen-population/

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

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Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

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Harvard study: kids are eating the healthier lunches

24 Mar

Moi wrote in School lunches: The political hot potato:
There are some very good reasons why meals are provided at schools. Education Bug has a history of the school lunch program http://www.educationbug.org/a/the-history-of-the-school-lunch-program.html

President Harry S. Truman began the national school lunch program in 1946 as a measure of national security. He did so after reading a study that revealed many young men had been rejected from the World War II draft due to medical conditions caused by childhood malnutrition. Since that time more than 180 million lunches have been served to American children who attend either a public school or a non-profit private school.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (Agriculture Department) has a School Lunch Program Fact Sheet http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/lunch/aboutlunch/NSLPFactSheet.pdf
According to the fact sheet, more than 30 million children are fed by the program. Physicians for Responsible Medicine criticize the content of school lunch programs

In Healthy School Lunches the physicians group says:

Menus in most school lunch programs are too high in saturated fat and cholesterol and too low in fiber- and nutrient-rich fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes (see PCRM’s 2008 School Lunch Report Card). Major changes are needed to encourage the health of the nation’s youth and to reverse the growing trends of obesity, early-onset diabetes, and hypertension, among other chronic diseases, in children and teens. http://www.pcrm.org/health/healthy-school-lunches/changes/key-changes-recommended-for-the-national-school

A 2003 General Accounting Office (GAO) reached the same conclusion. See, School Lunch Program: Efforts Needed to Improve Nutrition and Encourage and Healthy Eating http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-03-506 https://drwilda.com/2011/11/03/school-lunches-the-political-hot-potato/

Science Daily reported in the article, New school meal standards significantly increase fruit, vegetable consumption:

New federal standards launched in 2012 that require schools to offer healthier meals have led to increased fruit and vegetable consumption, according to a new study from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers. The study, the first to examine school food consumption both before and after the standards went into effect, contradicts criticisms that the new standards have increased food waste.
“There is a push from some organizations and lawmakers to weaken the new standards. We hope the findings, which show that students are consuming more fruits and vegetables, will discourage those efforts,” said lead author Juliana Cohen, research fellow in the Department of Nutrition at HSPH.
Some 32 million students eat school meals every day; for many low-income students, up to half their daily energy intake is from school meals. Under the previous dietary guidelines, school breakfasts and lunches were high in sodium and saturated fats and were low in whole grains and fiber. The new standards from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) aimed to improve the nutritional quality of school meals by making whole grains, fruits, and vegetables more available, requiring the selection of a fruit or vegetable, increasing the portion sizes of fruits and vegetables, removing trans fats, and placing limits on total calories and sodium levels.
The researchers collected plate waste data among 1,030 students in four schools in an urban, low-income school district both before (fall 2011) and after (fall 2012) the new standards went into effect. Following the implementation of the new standards, fruit selection increased by 23.0%; entrée and vegetable selection remained unchanged. In addition, consumption of vegetables increased by 16.2%; fruit consumption was unchanged, but because more students selected fruit, overall, more fruit was consumed post-implementation.
Importantly, the new standards did not result in increased food waste, contradicting anecdotal reports from food service directors, teachers, parents, and students that the regulations were causing an increase in waste due to both larger portion sizes and the requirement that students select a fruit or vegetable. However, high levels of fruit and vegetable waste continued to be a problem — students discarded roughly 60%-75% of vegetables and 40% of fruits on their trays. The authors say that schools must focus on improving food quality and palatability to reduce waste…..
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140304071040.htm

Citation:

New school meal standards significantly increase fruit, vegetable consumption
Date: March 4, 2014
Source: Harvard School of Public Health
Summary:
New federal standards launched in 2012 that require schools to offer healthier meals have led to increased fruit and vegetable consumption, according to a new study. The study, the first to examine school food consumption both before and after the standards went into effect, contradicts criticisms that the new standards have increased food waste. “There is a push from some organizations and lawmakers to weaken the new standards. We hope the findings, which show that students are consuming more fruits and vegetables, will discourage those efforts,” said the lead author.
Journal Reference:
1. Juliana F.W. Cohen, Scott Richardson, Ellen Parker, Paul J. Catalano, Eric B. Rimm. Impact of the New U.S. Department of Agriculture School Meal Standards on Food Selection, Consumption, and Waste. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, March 2014 DOI: 10.1016/j.amepre.2013.11.013

Here is the press release from Harvard:

New school meal standards significantly increase fruit, vegetable consumption
For immediate release: Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Boston, MA — New federal standards launched in 2012 that require schools to offer healthier meals have led to increased fruit and vegetable consumption, according to a new study from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers. The study, the first to examine school food consumption both before and after the standards went into effect, contradicts criticisms that the new standards have increased food waste.
“There is a push from some organizations and lawmakers to weaken the new standards. We hope the findings, which show that students are consuming more fruits and vegetables, will discourage those efforts,” said lead author Juliana Cohen, research fellow in the Department of Nutrition at HSPH.
Some 32 million students eat school meals every day; for many low-income students, up to half their daily energy intake is from school meals. Under the previous dietary guidelines, school breakfasts and lunches were high in sodium and saturated fats and were low in whole grains and fiber. The new standards from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) aimed to improve the nutritional quality of school meals by making whole grains, fruits, and vegetables more available, requiring the selection of a fruit or vegetable, increasing the portion sizes of fruits and vegetables, removing trans fats, and placing limits on total calories and sodium levels.
The researchers collected plate waste data among 1,030 students in four schools in an urban, low-income school district both before (fall 2011) and after (fall 2012) the new standards went into effect. Following the implementation of the new standards, fruit selection increased by 23.0%; entrée and vegetable selection remained unchanged. In addition, consumption of vegetables increased by 16.2%; fruit consumption was unchanged, but because more students selected fruit, overall, more fruit was consumed post-implementation.
Importantly, the new standards did not result in increased food waste, contradicting anecdotal reports from food service directors, teachers, parents, and students that the regulations were causing an increase in waste due to both larger portion sizes and the requirement that students select a fruit or vegetable. However, high levels of fruit and vegetable waste continued to be a problem—students discarded roughly 60%-75% of vegetables and 40% of fruits on their trays. The authors say that schools must focus on improving food quality and palatability to reduce waste.
“The new school meal standards are the strongest implemented by the USDA to date, and the improved dietary intakes will likely have important health implications for children,” wrote the researchers.
Other HSPH authors included Eric Rimm, senior author and associate professor in the departments of Epidemiology and Nutrition, and Paul Catalano, senior lecturer on biostatistics.
Support was provided by Arbella Insurance and Project Bread. Cohen is supported by the Nutritional Epidemiology of Cancer Education and Career Development Program (R25 CA 098566).
“Impact of the New U.S. Department of Agriculture School Meal Standards on Food Selection, Consumption, and Waste,” Juliana F.W. Cohen, Scott Richardson, Ellen Parker, Paul J. Catalano, Eric B. Rimm, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 46(4):388-394, online March 4, 2014
For more information:
Todd Datz
tdatz@hsph.harvard.edu
617.432.8413
photo: © XiXinXing/Alamy
###
About Harvard School of Public Health
Harvard School of Public Health brings together dedicated experts from many disciplines to educate new generations of global health leaders and produce powerful ideas that improve the lives and health of people everywhere. As a community of leading scientists, educators, and students, we work together to take innovative ideas from the laboratory and the classroom to people’s lives—not only making scientific breakthroughs, but also working to change individual behaviors, public policies, and health care practices. Each year, more than 400 faculty members at HSPH teach 1,000-plus full-time students from around the world and train thousands more through online and executive education courses. Founded in 1913 as the Harvard-MIT School of Health Officers, the School is recognized as America’s oldest professional training program in public health.

The challenge is getting kids to eat the food mandated by the rules and for school districts to find “kid tasty” foods which are affordable. A Child’s health is too important to be the subject of tawdry political wrangling and high pressure tactics from big money interests. Our goal as a society should be:

A healthy child in a healthy family who attends a healthy school in a healthy neighborhood ©

Resources:

USDA changes school lunch requirements
http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/271813-usda-changes-school-lunch-requirements

USDA backpedals on healthy school-lunch rules
http://grist.org/news/usda-backpedals-on-healthy-school-lunch-rules/

National School Lunch Program Fact Sheet http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/lunch/aboutlunch/NSLPFactSheet.pdf

Related:
School dinner programs: Trying to reduce the number of hungry children
https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/01/28/school-dinner-programs-trying-to-reduce-the-number-of-hungry-children/

School lunches: The political hot potato
https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/03/school-lunches-the-political-hot-potato/

The government that money buys: School lunch cave in by Congress
https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/16/the-government-that-money-buys-school-lunch-cave-in-by-congress/

Do kids get enough time to eat lunch?
https://drwilda.com/2012/08/28/do-kids-get-enough-time-to-eat-lunch/

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

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Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©
https://drwilda.com/

University of California, San Francisco study identifies most common reasons for children’s mental health hospitalizations

23 Mar

Moi wrote about troubled children in Schools have to deal with depressed and troubled children: Both the culture and the economy are experiencing turmoil. For some communities, the unsettled environment is a new phenomenon, for other communities, children have been stressed for generations. According to the article, Understanding Depression which was posted at the Kids Health site:

Depression is the most common mental health problem in the United States. Each year it affects 17 million people of all age groups, races, and economic backgrounds.
As many as 1 in every 33 children may have depression; in teens, that number may be as high as 1 in 8.
Schools are developing strategies to deal with troubled kids…. http://kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/feelings/understanding_depression.html

One strategy in helping children to succeed is to recognize and treat depression.

How Common Is Depression In Children?

According to Mary H. Sarafolean, PhD in the article, Depression In School Age Children and Adolescents

In general, depression affects a person’s physical, cognitive, emotional/affective, and motivational well-being, no matter their age. For example, a child with depression between the ages of 6 and 12 may exhibit fatigue, difficulty with schoolwork, apathy and/or a lack of motivation. An adolescent or teen may be oversleeping, socially isolated, acting out in self-destructive ways and/or have a sense of hopelessness.
Prevalence and Risk Factors
While only 2 percent of pre-teen school-age children and 3-5 percent of teenagers have clinical depression, it is the most common diagnosis of children in a clinical setting (40-50 percent of diagnoses). The lifetime risk of depression in females is 10-25 percent and in males, 5-12 percent. Children and teens who are considered at high risk for depression disorders include:
* children referred to a mental health provider for school problems
* children with medical problems
* gay and lesbian adolescents
* rural vs. urban adolescents
* incarcerated adolescents
* pregnant adolescents
* children with a family history of depression http://www.healthyplace.com/depression/children/recognizing-symptoms-of-depression-in-teens-and-children/

If you or your child has one or more of the risk factors and your child is exhibiting symptoms of prolonged sadness, it might be wise to have your child evaluated for depression.

How to Recognize Depression In Your Child?

MedNet has an excellent article about Depression In Children and how to recognize signs of depression in your child.
Signs and symptoms of depression in children include:

* Irritability or anger
* Continuous feelings of sadness, hopelessness
* Social withdrawal
* Increased sensitivity to rejection
* Changes in appetite — either increased or decreased
* Changes in sleep — sleeplessness or excessive sleep
* Vocal outbursts or crying
* Difficulty concentrating
* Fatigue and low energy
* Physical complaints (such as stomachaches, headaches) that do not respond to
treatment
* Reduced ability to function during events and activities at home or with friends, in school, extracurricular activities, and in other hobbies or interests
* Feelings of worthlessness or guilt
* Impaired thinking or concentration
* Thoughts of death or suicide
Not all children have all of these symptoms. In fact, most will display different symptoms at different times and in different settings. Although some children may continue to function reasonably well in structured environments, most kids with significant depression will suffer a noticeable change in social activities, loss of interest in school and poor academic performance, or a change in appearance. Children may also begin using drugs or alcohol,
especially if they are over the age of 12. http://www.onhealth.com/depression_in_children/article.htm

The best defense for parents is a good awareness of what is going on with their child. As a parent you need to know what is going on in your child’s world. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/15/schools-have-to-deal-with-depressed-and-troubled-children/

Science Daily reported in the article, Study identifies most common, costly reasons for mental health hospitalizations for kids:

Nearly one in 10 hospitalized children have a primary diagnosis of a mental health condition, and depression alone accounts for $1.33 billion in hospital charges annually, according to a new analysis led by UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital.
The study is the first to examine frequency and costs associated with specific inpatient mental health diagnoses for children, and is a step towards creating meaningful measures of the quality of pediatric hospital care.
“This is the first paper to give a clear picture of the mental health reasons kids are admitted to hospitals nationally,” said Naomi Bardach, MD, an assistant professor of pediatrics at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital and lead author. “Mental health hospitalizations have been increasing in kids, up 24% from 2007-2010. Mental health is a priority topic for national quality measures, which are intended to help improve care for all kids.”
The study will be published in the April issue of the journal Pediatrics.
More than 14 million children and adolescents in the United States have a diagnosable mental health disorder, yet little is known about which specific mental health diagnoses are causing children to be hospitalized. In the study, researchers found that depression, bipolar disorder and psychosis are the most common and expensive primary diagnoses for pediatric admissions.
“We now know through our analysis of cost and frequency which diagnoses are the most relevant,” said Bardach. “Next, we need to define what the optimal care is for children with these conditions so that hospitals can consistently deliver the best care for every child, every time.”
Using two national databases — Kids’ Inpatient Database and Pediatric Health Information System — the researchers looked at all hospital discharges in 2009 for patients aged three to 20 years old to determine the frequency of hospitalizations for primary mental health diagnoses. They compared the mental health hospitalizations between free-standing children’s hospitals and hospitals that treat both adults and children, to assess if there was a difference in frequency of diagnoses.
The study found that hospitalizations for children with primary mental health diagnoses were more than three times more frequent at general hospitals than free standing children’s hospitals, which the researchers say could indicate that general hospitals have a greater capacity to deliver inpatient psychiatric care than free-standing children’s hospitals…. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140317084531.htm

Citation:

Study identifies most common, costly reasons for mental health hospitalization

Date: March 17, 2014

Source: University of California, San Francisco

Summary:
Nearly one in 10 hospitalized children have a primary diagnosis of a mental health condition, and depression alone accounts for $1.33 billion in hospital charges annually, according to a new analysis. The study is the first to examine frequency and costs associated with specific inpatient mental health diagnoses for children, and is a step towards creating meaningful measures of the quality of pediatric hospital care.
Journal Reference:
1.Naomi S. Bardach, Tumaini R. Coker, Bonnie T. Zima, J. Michael Murphy, Penelope Knapp, Laura P. Richardson, Glenace Edwall, and Rita Mangione-Smith. Common and Costly Hospitalizations for Pediatric Mental Health Disorders. Pediatrics, March 2014 DOI: 10.1542/peds.2013-3165

Here is the press release from the University of San Francisco:

Study Identifies Most Common, Costly Reasons for Mental Health Hospitalizations for Kids
By Juliana Bunim on March 13, 2014
Nearly one in 10 hospitalized children have a primary diagnosis of a mental health condition, and depression alone accounts for $1.33 billion in hospital charges annually, according to a new analysis led by UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital.
The study is the first to examine frequency and costs associated with specific inpatient mental health diagnoses for children, and is a step towards creating meaningful measures of the quality of pediatric hospital care.
“This is the first paper to give a clear picture of the mental health reasons kids are admitted to hospitals nationally,” said Naomi Bardach, MD, an assistant professor of pediatrics at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital and lead author. “Mental health hospitalizations have been increasing in kids, up 24% from 2007-2010. Mental health is a priority topic for national quality measures, which are intended to help improve care for all kids.”
The study will be published in the April issue of the journal Pediatrics.
More than 4 million children and adolescents in the United States have a diagnosable mental health disorder, yet little is known about which specific mental health diagnoses are causing children to be hospitalized. In the study, researchers found that depression, bipolar disorder and psychosis are the most common and expensive primary diagnoses for pediatric admissions.
“We now know through our analysis of cost and frequency which diagnoses are the most relevant,” said Bardach. “Next, we need to define what the optimal care is for children with these conditions so that hospitals can consistently deliver the best care for every child, every time.”
Using two national databases – Kids’ Inpatient Database and Pediatric Health Information System – the researchers looked at all hospital discharges in 2009 for patients aged three to 20 years old to determine the frequency of hospitalizations for primary mental health diagnoses. They compared the mental health hospitalizations between free-standing children’s hospitals and hospitals that treat both adults and children, to assess if there was a difference in frequency of diagnoses.
The study found that hospitalizations for children with primary mental health diagnoses were more than three times more frequent at general hospitals than free standing children’s hospitals, which the researchers say could indicate that general hospitals have a greater capacity to deliver inpatient psychiatric care than free-standing children’s hospitals.
At both kinds of hospitals, the most common mental health diagnoses were similar (depression, bipolar disorder, and psychosis), which the researchers say supports the creation of diagnosis-specific quality measures for all hospitals that admit children.
Depression accounted for 44.1 percent of all pediatric primary mental health admissions, with charges of $1.33 billion dollars, based on the billing databases used in the study. Bipolar was the second most common diagnosis accounting for 18.1 percent and $702 million, followed by psychosis at 12.1 percent and $540 million.
“These are costly hospitalizations, and being hospitalized is a heavy burden for families and patients. Prevention and wellness is a huge part of the Affordable Care Act, along with controlling costs by delivering great care,” said Bardach. “This study helps us understand that mental health is a key priority. The long term goal is not only to improve hospital care for these kids, but also to understand how to effectively optimize mental health resources in the outpatient world.”
Co-authors include Tumaini Coker, MD, MBA and Bonnie Zima, MD, MPH, both of UCLA; J. Michael Murphy, EdD, Massachusetts General Hospital Boston; Penelope Knapp, MD, UC Davis; Laura Richardson, MD, MPH and Rita Mangione-Smith, MD, MPH, both of the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle; and Glenace Edwall, PsyD, PhD, MPP, Minnesota State Health Access Data Assistance Center.
The study was supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the National Institute for Children’s Health and Human Development.
UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital creates an environment where children and their families find compassionate care at the forefront of scientific discovery, with more than 150 experts in 50 medical specialties serving patients throughout Northern California and beyond. The hospital admits about 5,000 children each year, including 2,000 babies born in the hospital.

If you or your child needs help for depression or another illness, then go to a reputable medical provider. There is nothing wrong with taking the steps necessary to get well.

Related:

GAO report: Children’s mental health services are lacking
https://drwilda.com/2013/01/12/gao-report-childrens-mental-health-services-are-lacking/

Schools have to deal with depressed and troubled children:
https://drwilda.com/2011/11/15/schools-have-to-deal-with-depressed-and-troubled-children/

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART© http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews © http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©
https://drwilda.com/

Ohio State University study: Video games negatively affect the white player’s views of blacks

22 Mar

The Center for Sport Policy and Conduct (Sport Center) at Indiana University, Bloomington has excellent capsule definitions of violence, aggression, and deviance According to the Sport Center violence is defined as:

Violence can be seen as a form of physical assault based on an intent to injure another person or destroy the property of others. To continue this definition, “violence in sport violates the norms and rules of the contest, threatens lives and property, and usually cannot be anticipated by the persons affected” (Smith, 1983, p. 6). http://www.indiana.edu/~cspc/violence.htm

Aggression is defined as:

Aggression can be generally defined as all behavior intended to destroy another person’s property or to injure another person, physically or psychologically. It has been reported that action has to violate norms and rules shared by society in order to be defined as aggressive. Several experiments (Tedeschi, Gaes, & Rivera, 1977) found that a protagonist who intends to cause injury is only judged by witnesses to be aggressive when his behavior is also judged to be antinormative; in other words, when they are opposing the social rules that apply to that particular situation. Judgment is the same when the action or “intent to injure” constitutes a response to a previous provocation. If, however, the action exceeds the preceding deed, the revenge is viewed as excessive and judged as inappropriate and aggressive.

Deviance is defined as “Deviant behavior is usually that which departs from the norm; anything that goes against the accepted societal standards could be classified as such.”

Benjamin Fearnow of CBS reported in the story, Study: Violent Video Games Encourage Racist, Aggressive Attitudes Toward Blacks:

Violent video games encourage negative racial attitudes and thoughts, with white game players displaying stronger implicit and explicit aggressive attitudes toward blacks when they play as black characters.
A new study from researchers at The Ohio State University and the University of Michigan finds that white gamers who played as black avatars exhibited more racist sentiments, including connections made between blacks and weapons and photos of black people being linked to words such as “horrible” and “evil.”
“This is a very troubling finding,” the researchers write in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.
“Our research suggests that people who play violent video games as violent black characters are more likely to believe that blacks are violent people,” writes a research team led by Grace Yang of the University of Michigan and Brad Bushman of the Ohio State University. “Playing a violent video game as a black character reinforces harmful stereotypes that blacks are violent.”
The study examined the effects of playing violent video games as a black avatar (versus a white character) on racial stereotypes and aggression. Games such as Grand Theft Auto V and Saints Row 2 allow players to choose the race of their character, and the study findings suggest that a player’s aggression against others is increased “immediately afterwards” in some cases, “even more than playing a violent game as white characters would.” http://cleveland.cbslocal.com/2014/03/21/study-violent-video-games-encourage-racist-aggressive-attitudes-toward-blacks/

Citation:

Effects of Avatar Race in Violent Video Games on Racial Attitudes and Aggression
1. Grace S. Yang1
2. Bryan Gibson2
3. Adam K. Lueke2
4. L. Rowell Huesmann1
5. Brad J. Bushman3,4⇑
1. 1University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
2. 2Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, MI, USA
3. 3The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA
4. 4VU University Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
1. Brad J. Bushman, The Ohio State University, 3127 Derby Hall, 154 North Oval Mall, Columbus, OH 43210, USA. Email: bushman.20@osu.edu
Abstract
The media often link Black characters and violence. This is especially true in video games, in which Black male characters are virtually always violent. This research tested the effects of playing a violent game as a Black (vs. White) avatar on racial stereotypes and aggression. In Experiment 1, White participants (N = 126) who played a violent video game as a Black avatar displayed stronger implicit and explicit negative attitudes toward Blacks than did participants who played a violent video game as a White avatar or a nonviolent game as a Black or White avatar. In Experiment 2, White participants (N = 141) who played a violent video game as a Black (vs. White) avatar displayed stronger implicit attitudes linking Blacks to weapons. Implicit attitudes, in turn, related to subsequent aggression. Black violent video game avatars not only make players more aggressive than do White avatars, they also reinforce stereotypes that Blacks are violent.

Here is the press release from Ohio State:

Playing As Black: Avatar Race Affects White Video Game Players
Whites act more aggressively after they play as black avatars
COLUMBUS, Ohio – What happens when white video game players see themselves as black characters in a violent game?
A new study suggests some disturbing answers: It makes the white players act more aggressively after the game is over, have stronger explicit negative attitudes toward blacks and display stronger implicit attitudes linking blacks to weapons.
These results are the first to link avatar race in violent video games to later aggression, said Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at The Ohio State University.
And it raises another troubling impact that violent video games can have on players, he said.
“Playing a violent video game as a black character reinforces harmful stereotypes that blacks are violent,” Bushman said.
“We found there are real consequences to having these stereotypes – it can lead to more aggressive behavior.”
The results appear online in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science and will be published in a future print edition.
The study involved two related experiments. In the first, 126 white university students (60 percent males) played the violent game Saints Row 2. They were randomly assigned to play the game either as a black or white male avatar.
Before the participants arrived, the researchers set up the game with the black or white avatar and rotated the game view so that the avatar was visible to the participant when he or she started playing.
The participants were assigned to play with a violent goal (break out of prison) or a nonviolent goal (find a chapel somewhere in the city without harming others).
Afterward, those who played with the violent goal and as a black avatar showed stronger explicit negative attitudes toward blacks than did those who played as a white avatar. For example, those who played as a black avatar were more likely to agree with the statement “It’s really a matter of some people not trying hard enough; if blacks would only try harder they could be just as well off as whites.”
But the negative attitudes weren’t just explicit. All participants took the Implicit Association Test (IAT), which is designed to reveal unconscious bias. During this test, researchers measure how quickly participants link a white or black face with a “good” word (joy, love, peace) or a “bad” word (terrible, horrible, evil). If it takes a participant longer to link a black face to good words than it does to link a white face, then that is considered showing more negative attitudes toward blacks.
Results showed that participants who played the violent version of the game as a black avatar were more likely to associate black faces with negative words on the IAT than were those who played as a white avatar.
“The media have the power to perpetuate the stereotype that blacks are violent, and this is certainly seen in video games,” Bushman said.
“This violent stereotype may be more prevalent in video games than in any other form of media because being a black character in a video game is almost synonymous with being a violent character.”
This stereotype can affect people’s actions, as found in the second experiment.
In this study, 141 white college students (65 percent female) played one of two violent games: WWE Smackdown vs. RAW 2010 or Fight Night Round 4. These games both used a third-person perspective, allowing the player to see his or her avatar’s race throughout the game.
Again, participants were assigned to play as a black or a white avatar. After playing, the participants completed another version of the IAT, which took an implicit measure of the stereotype that blacks are violent. In this version, photos of black and white male and female faces were paired with photos of weapons or harmless objects like a cell phone or camera.
The students who played the game as a black avatar were more likely to associate black faces with weapons than were students who played as a white avatar.
But this study went further by finding that participants who played a violent game as a black avatar acted more aggressively against a partner than did those who played as a white avatar.
“Playing a violent video game as a black character reinforces harmful stereotypes that blacks are violent.”
This part of the study involved a test that researchers have used since 1999 to measure aggression. Participants had the opportunity to force an unseen partner (who didn’t actually exist) to eat hot sauce after the partner revealed that he or she strongly disliked spicy food.
Those who played the violent game as a black avatar gave their partner 115 percent more hot sauce than did those who played as a white avatar.
In a statistical analysis, Bushman found that participants’ implicit attitudes that blacks are violent was linked to their actual aggressive behavior after the game was turned off.
“This suggests that playing a violent video game as a black avatar strengthens players’ attitudes that blacks are violent, which then influences them to behave more aggressively afterward,” he said.
Bushman noted that this study shows that it doesn’t always help white people to take the perspective of a black person.
“Usually, taking the perspective of a minority person is seen as a good thing, as a way to evoke empathy,” Bushman said. “But if white people are fed a media diet that shows blacks as violent, they don’t have a realistic view of black people. It isn’t good to put yourself in the shoes of a murderer, as you do in many of these violent games.”
Bushman conducted the study with Grace S. Yang and L. Rowell Huesmann of the University of Michigan and Bryan Gibson and Adam K. Leuke of Central Michigan University.
Contact: Brad Bushman, (614) 688-8779; Bushman.20@osu.edu
Written by Jeff Grabmeier, (614) 292-8457; Grabmeier.1@osu.edu

Moi wrote in So, we’re all wearing hoodies now? It really is about stereotypes:
The death cult of hip-hop has been on a lot of people’s radar for the past few years. Because of artistic freedom and the romanticizing of some hip-hop and rap stars, those sounding the alarm about this death cult have been labeled as prudes, nervous ninnies, and anti-free speech. A 2005 Nightline story by Jake Tapper and Marie Nelson looked at the links between corporate America and hip-hop

“The blueprint now is an image that promotes all of the worst aspects of violent and anti-social behavior,” said Source editor Mays. “It takes those real issues of violent life that occur in our inner cities, it takes them out of context.”
Attorney Londell McMillan, who represents Lil’ Kim and many other hip-hop performers, says the record labels and radio stations push the artists toward a more violent image. “They all seek to do things that are extraordinary,” he said, “unfortunately it’s been extraordinarily in the pain of a people. They are often encouraged to take a certain kind of approach to the art form.”
Added NYPD Commissioner Kelly, “Whereas some of the other violence was sort of attendant to the business itself, now I think they’re trying to exploit it and make money off of it.”
But C-Murder says if he projected a more benign image his career would be over. “I wouldn’t sell a record because my fans would know that’s not me,” he said. “They don’t expect me to just sit in that booth and write about stuff that the news or the media want to hear about.”
Record executive Dash adds there is a double standard between predominantly black and predominantly white music. “I remember Woodstock Part II was a mess,” Dash said, referring to the 1999 rock ‘n’ roll concert festival that exploded in a mass of riots and rapes. But, Dash said, “nothing more about it than that” transpired. “There wasn’t any new laws, there wasn’t any investigations. It just was.” http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/News/story?id=694982

Lest you think I am anti-capitalism, the real kind, not the corporate welfare of Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Chase, you are wrong. Most inner city neighborhoods and poor regions like Appalachia and Mississippi desperately need investment and capital to encourage entrepreneurs. As the motto of Homeboy Industries states, the best defense against violence is a job.
Moi has been railing against the hip hop culture for years because it is destructive, produces violence, but just as important it stereotypes Blacks whether they participate in hip hop culture or not. Geraldo Rivera got excoriated for suggesting that Trayvon Martin was shot because of his hoodie. Jack Mirkinson reports in the Huffington Post article, Trayvon Martin Hoodie Comments: ‘Half Of It Is The Way The Young Men Look’ (VIDEO):

The Fox News host caused a firestorm on Friday morning when he said that Martin was shot to death in part because he was wearing a hoodie. “I’ll bet you money, if he didn’t have that hoodie on, that nutty neighborhood watch guy wouldn’t have responded in that violent and aggressive way,” he said.
Instant outrage, and a fair amount of ridicule, followed. Rivera admitted that his own son told him he was ashamed of him. But he stood staunchly behind his comments when speaking to O’Reilly. The two began talking about New York’s controversial “stop and frisk” laws, which disproportionately affect people of color. Rivera said he supported the laws, and then brought up hoodies again.
“I’m telling you, half of it is the way the young men look,” he said. “…If a cop looks at three kids on the corner, and they’ve got those hoodies up — and this is where I got in trouble with the Trayvon Martin case — if they’ve got those hoodies up, and they’re hanging out on the corner, the cops look at them and say, ‘Hmm, hoodies. Who else wears hoodies? Everybody that ever stuck up a convenience store, D.B. Cooper, the guy that hijacked a plane, Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber…’” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/24/geraldo-rivera-trayvon-martin-hoodie-comments_n_1377014.html?ref=email_share

Moi wonders how many of those who were so up in arms about Rivera’s comments have practical experience living in an urban environment. Moi is a bus chick and takes the bus all over Seattle. From observation, moi can tell you that when a group of young men wearing hoodies boards the bus a considerable number of folks exit at the next stop. Or, what about the observation that in large corporate office buildings people don’t want to be the lone person to enter an elevator alone with with a well-dressed Black man. It is about perception of culture and stereotypes. https://drwilda.com/tag/how-hip-hop-holds-blacks-back/

Resources:

A Dozen Things Students Can Do to Stop School Violence http://www.sacsheriff.com/crime_prevention/documents/school_safety_04.cfm

A Dozen Things. Teachers Can Do To Stop School Violence. http://www.ncpc.org/cms-upload/ncpc/File/teacher12.pdf

Preventing School Violence: A Practical Guide
http://www.indiana.edu/~safeschl/psv.pdf

Related:
Stanford University study: Sexualization of women in the tech world
https://drwilda.com/tag/how-using-sexy-female-avatars-in-video-games-changes-women/

Two studies: Social media and social dysfunction https://drwilda.com/2013/04/13/two-studies-social-media-and-social-dysfunction/

Brock University study: Violent video games can delay children’s moral judgment https://drwilda.com/2014/02/07/brock-university-study-violent-video-games-can-delay-childrens-moral-judgment/

Where information leads to Hope. ©Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©
Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART© http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

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