Tag Archives: The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families

Ohio State University study: Why four-year-olds don’t thrive in head start classes

11 Nov

One of the mantras of this blog is that education is a partnership between the student, parent(s) or guardian(s), teacher(s), and the school. All parts of the partnership must be involved. 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 Class Matters

Teachers and administrators as well as many politicians if they are honest know that children arrive at school at various points on the ready to learn continuum. Teachers have to teach children at whatever point on the continuum the children are. Jay Matthews reports in the Washington Post article, Try parent visits, not parent takeovers of schools. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/try-parent-visits-not-parent-takeovers-of-schools/2012/05/30/gJQAlDDz2U_story.html

The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement.http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd

Science Daily reported in Study shows why four-year-olds don’t thrive in head start classes:

Most Head Start classrooms serve children of mixed ages and that hurts the academic growth of older children, a new national study suggests.

Researchers found that 4-year-olds in Head Start classrooms that included higher concentrations of 3-year-olds were up to five months behind in academic development compared with their peers in classrooms with fewer younger children.
That’s a problem because, as of 2009, about 75 percent of all Head Start classrooms were mixed-age. Head Start is a federal preschool program that promotes the school readiness of children in low-income families from age 3 to age 5.
“While there has been some enthusiasm for mixed-age classrooms, our results suggest there may be a significant downside for older children,” said Kelly Purtell, co-author of the study and assistant professor of human sciences at The Ohio State University.

“Four-year-olds are often enrolled in classrooms that are less supportive of their academic learning.”
The results may also help explain why a 2010 national evaluation of the Head Start program found that it was only modestly effective in helping the academic achievement of 4-year-olds.

“Mixed-age classrooms may be one reason that older children don’t seem to benefit as much from Head Start as do younger children,” said Arya Ansari, lead author of the study and a graduate student in human development and family sciences at the University of Texas at Austin….

The researchers used data from the Family and Child Experiences Survey, which is a nationally representative sample of 3- and 4-year-old Head Start attendees across 486 classrooms nationwide.

This study included 2,829 children who were tested in fall 2009 and spring 2010 to determine how much they progressed during that time on assessments of language and literary skills, math skills, social skills and behavior.

Findings showed that a higher proportion of 3-year-olds in the classroom was linked to lower gains in math and in language and literacy skills among 4-year-olds.

It didn’t take many 3-year-olds in the classroom to hurt the academic growth of the older children. Even when 3-year-olds composed just 20 percent of a class, the older children lost nearly two months of academic achievement in the school year.

But when the younger children made up nearly half the class, the 4-year-olds lost roughly four to five months of academic development….

There was no effect on social or behavioral skills for either age group in mixed-age classes.

This study didn’t look at why mixed-age classrooms hurt older children’s academic gains. But other research suggests two possibilities. One is that interacting with younger peers does not provide as much gain for older children as interacting with peers at the same or higher skill levels in math and language…. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/11/151110094407.htm

Citation:

Study shows why four-year-olds don’t thrive in head start classes
Date: November 10, 2015

Source: Ohio State University

Summary:

Most Head Start classrooms serve children of mixed ages and that hurts the academic growth of older children, a new national study suggests.

Here is the press release from Ohio State University:

Study shows why 4-year-olds don’t thrive in Head Start classes

Mixed-age classrooms hurt academic progress of older children

By: Jeff Grabmeier

Published on November 10, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Most Head Start classrooms serve children of mixed ages and that hurts the academic growth of older children, a new national study suggests.

Researchers found that 4-year-olds in Head Start classrooms that included higher concentrations of 3-year-olds were up to five months behind in academic development compared with their peers in classrooms with fewer younger children.
That’s a problem because, as of 2009, about 75 percent of all Head Start classrooms were mixed-age. Head Start is a federal preschool program that promotes the school readiness of children in low-income families from age 3 to age 5.

“While there has been some enthusiasm for mixed-age classrooms, our results suggest there may be a significant downside for older children,” said Kelly Purtell, co-author of the study and assistant professor of human sciences at The Ohio State University.

“Four-year-olds are often enrolled in classrooms that are less supportive of their academic learning.”
The results may also help explain why a 2010 national evaluation of the Head Start program found that it was only modestly effective in helping the academic achievement of 4-year-olds.

“Mixed-age classrooms may be one reason that older children don’t seem to benefit as much from Head Start as do younger children,” said Arya Ansari, lead author of the study and a graduate student in human development and family sciences at the University of Texas at Austin.

Purtell and Ansari conducted the study with Elizabeth Gershoff, an associate professor at UT-Austin.
Their results appear online in the journal Psychological Science.

The researchers used data from the Family and Child Experiences Survey, which is a nationally representative sample of 3- and 4-year-old Head Start attendees across 486 classrooms nationwide.

This study included 2,829 children who were tested in fall 2009 and spring 2010 to determine how much they progressed during that time on assessments of language and literary skills, math skills, social skills and behavior.

Findings showed that a higher proportion of 3-year-olds in the classroom was linked to lower gains in math and in language and literacy skills among 4-year-olds.

It didn’t take many 3-year-olds in the classroom to hurt the academic growth of the older children. Even when 3-year-olds composed just 20 percent of a class, the older children lost nearly two months of academic achievement in the school year.

But when the younger children made up nearly half the class, the 4-year-olds lost roughly four to five months of academic development.

“Not only did we see limits in academic growth in 4-year-olds, but we also didn’t see any academic gains for 3-year-olds who were in these mixed-age classrooms,” Purtell said. “So there was no real benefit for the younger children.”
There was no effect on social or behavioral skills for either age group in mixed-age classes.

This study didn’t look at why mixed-age classrooms hurt older children’s academic gains. But other research suggests two possibilities. One is that interacting with younger peers does not provide as much gain for older children as interacting with peers at the same or higher skill levels in math and language.

Another is that teachers modify their classroom practices to accommodate a wider range of skill levels, which leads to older children hearing content they’ve already been exposed to and feeling disengaged.
It is likely that both factors play a role, Purtell said.

Ansari said that it may not be feasible for many Head Start programs to separate children by age.
“That means we need to figure out what teachers and programs can do to foster a more cognitively stimulating environment for the older children,” he said. https://news.osu.edu/news/2015/11/10/mixed-age-class/

Teachers and schools have been made TOTALLY responsible for the education outcome of the children, many of whom come to school not ready to learn and who reside in families that for a variety of reasons cannot support their education. All children are capable of learning, but a one-size-fits-all approach does not serve all children well. Different populations of children will require different strategies and some children will require remedial help, early intervention, and family support to achieve their education goals.

Richard D. Kahlenberg, , a senior fellow at The Century Foundation wrote the informative Washington Post article, How to attack the growing educational gap between rich and poor. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/how-to-attack-the-growing-educational-gap-between-rich-and-poor/2012/02/10/gIQArDOg4Q_blog.html

There is no magic bullet or “Holy Grail” in education. There is only what works to produce academic achievement in each population of children. That is why school choice is so important. https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/02/11/3rd-world-america-money-changes-everything/
https://drwilda.com/2012/08/29/study-poverty-affects-education-attainment/

Related:

Tips for parent and teacher conferences
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/07/tips-for-parent-and-teacher-conferences/

Common Sense Media report: Media choices at home affect school performance
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/01/common-sense-media-report-media-choices-at-home-affect-school-performance/

Making time for family dinner
https://drwilda.com/2012/09/10/making-time-for-family-dinner/

Policy brief: The fiscal and educational benefits of universal universal preschool https://drwilda.com/2012/11/25/policy-brief-the-fiscal-and-educational-benefits-of-universal-universal-preschool/

Studies: Lack of support and early parenthood cause kids to dropout
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/19/studies-lack-of-support-and-early-parenthood-cause-kids-to-dropout/

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/

Parent involvement: Mobile apps increase parent involvement

6 Apr

Moi wrote about the importance of parental involvement in Missouri program: Parent home visits:
One of the mantras of this blog is that education is a partnership between the student, parent(s) or guardian(s), teacher(s), and the school. All parts of the partnership must be involved. 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 http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/15/national/class/OVERVIEW-FINAL.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Class Matters http://www.nytimes.com/pages/national/class/

Teachers and administrators as well as many politicians if they are honest know that children arrive at school at various points on the ready to learn continuum. Teachers have to teach children at whatever point on the continuum the children are. Jay Matthews reports in the Washington Post article, Try parent visits, not parent takeovers of schools. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/try-parent-visits-not-parent-takeovers-of-schools/2012/05/30/gJQAlDDz2U_story.html

The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement. http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd
Parent involvement is crucial to the success of children.

Heather B. Hayes reported in the EdTech article, School Districts Use Mobile Apps to Engage Parents:

When Michael Thurmond, superintendent of the DeKalb County School District near Atlanta, challenged his staff to come up with new, innovative ways to bridge the gap between their highest- and lowest-performing schools, CIO Gary Brantley had a ready response: a mobile app for parents.
That might seem like a knee-jerk ¬reaction, given the current zest for all things mobile, but Brantley’s solution was strongly rooted in need and fact. The lowest performers among the district’s 137 schools also had the lowest levels of parent engagement, in large part ¬because a majority of parents didn’t have the time or ability to travel to school for parent-teacher conferences or other functions. However, an internal survey showed that those same parents had access to mobile technology, with more than 90 percent of all district parents owning either a mobile phone or tablet.
“The idea was, parents can’t always come to us, so let’s try to take this information to them,” Brantley says. “When a grade is entered into the system, their student is late to class or there’s an emergency notification, let’s push that out to their mobile devices immediately, so they know what’s ¬happening at all times.”
Parents also can email teachers, get real-time notifications of bus pickup and drop-off times, access calendars, and receive Twitter and Facebook news feeds and sports scores. The app, which launched in early January, is already seen as a success, having been downloaded more than 6,000 times in its first month and earning rave reviews from users…
The Added Benefits of Having a Mobile App
How do mobile apps pay off for schools?
• During the ice storms of 2014, parents who downloaded the DeKalb County (Ga.) School District’s mobile app were able to receive school ¬closing and delay alerts in real time — a fact that earned praise for district officials, even as other district leaders were criticized for their delayed and confusing communication efforts.
• Parents at Wichita (Kan.) Public Schools can now view a single calendar of all academic and athletic events at any schools they choose to follow — a capability that’s impossible to create on a regular website and that helps parents keep up with what’s happening at all times. http://www.edtechmagazine.com/k12/article/2014/04/school-districts-use-mobile-apps-engage-parents

It is going to take coordination between not only education institutions, but a strong social support system to get many children through school. This does not mean a large program directed from Washington. But, more resources at the local school level which allow discretion with accountability. For example, if I child is not coming to school because they have no shoes or winter coat, then the child gets new shoes and/or a coat. School breakfast and lunch programs must be supported and if necessary, expanded. Unfortunately, schools are now the early warning system for many families in crisis.

Related:
Tips for parent and teacher conferences https://drwilda.com/2012/11/07/tips-for-parent-and-teacher-conferences/

Common Sense Media report: Media choices at home affect school performance
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/01/common-sense-media-report-media-choices-at-home-affect-school-performance/

Parents can use tax deductions to pay for special education needs https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/parents-can-use-tax-deductions-to-pay-for-special-education-needs/

Intervening in the lives of truant children by jailing parents https://drwilda.com/2012/10/07/intervening-in-the-lives-of-truant-children-by-jailing-parents/

Making time for family dinner https://drwilda.com/2012/09/10/making-time-for-family-dinner/

Embracing parents as education leaders https://drwilda.com/2012/11/28/embracing-parents-as-education-leaders/

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/

Parent homework: School home visits

3 Jan

Moi wrote in Missouri program: Parent home visits:

One of the mantras of this blog is that education is a partnership between the student, parent(s) or guardian(s), teacher(s), and the school. All parts of the partnership must be involved. 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 http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/15/national/class/OVERVIEW-FINAL.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Class Matters http://www.nytimes.com/pages/national/class/
Teachers and administrators as well as many politicians if they are honest know that children arrive at school at various points on the ready to learn continuum. Teachers have to teach children at whatever point on the continuum the children are.

Jay Matthews reported in the Washington Post article, Try parent visits, not parent takeovers of schools:

A modest program in Missouri — similar to one in the District — has found a way to help parents improve their children’s education. But nobody is paying much attention.
Instead, something called the parent trigger, the hottest parent program going, has gotten laws passed in four states even though it has had zero effect on achievement. The Missouri program, the Teacher Home Visit Program or HOME WORKS!, trains and organizes teachers to visit parents in their homes. It is quiet, steady, small and non-political. The parent trigger, begun in California by a well-meaning group called Parent Revolution, is also authorized in Mississippi, Texas and Louisiana and is deep into electoral politics. Both the Obama and Romney presidential campaigns have embraced it…. Few parents have the free time or experience to take charge of a school and figure out which of the many competing ideas for change are best. They are at the mercy of school promoters and local school bureaucrats and unions. It is hard for them to agree among themselves what they want. Their good intentions get them nowhere.
The first two attempts to use the trigger in California have been stymied by lawsuits and political quarrels. Anyone who understands the dynamics of public schools in a democracy knows the trigger is never going to get parents what they want
Home visits are different. They don’t require that parents figure out how to fix an entire school. Their only responsibility is to help teachers improve the learning of their own children, something they are uniquely qualified to
The nonprofit Concentric Educational Solutions Inc. START PROGRAM has been knocking on parent doors in the District for two years and has has started to do the same in Delaware and Detroit. The group says it has reduced truancy by as much as 78 percent. Teachers naturally wonder whether they have time for after-school visits, but the group’s executive director, David L. Heiber, says what they learn from parents can save many hours in class. With full staff participation, the most visits they might have to do in a year is 15, producing better attendance and more attention.
The Missouri HOME WORKS! program operates in 15 schools in the St. Louis area. Teachers, paid for their extra time, are trained at the end of the school year and beginning of the summer. The first round of summer visits allows teachers and parents to get to know each other and share what they know about students’ interests and needs. A family dinner for all wraps up the summer.
The second round of training sessions and visits comes in the first semester before the end of daylight saving time. The teachers explain to the parents where their child is academically and provide tools to increase their capacity to help their child. There is another family dinner, and sometimes there is a third round of visits in the spring.
A study by the St. Louis public school system last year of 616 home visits found that the third- to sixth-grade students involved had an increase in average math grades and that the grades of students not involved declined. A study of 586 home visits in the Maplewood Richmond Heights School District showed students involved had better attendance.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/try-parent-visits-not-parent-takeovers-of-schools/2012/05/30/gJQAlDDz2U_story.html

The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement.

In Parents As Partners in Early Education, the Council reports:

Researchers generally agree that parents and family are the primary influence on a child’s development. Parents, grandparents, foster parents and others who take on parenting roles strongly affect language development, emotional growth, social skills and personality. High quality early childhood programs engage parents as partners in early education, encouraging them to volunteer in programs, read to their children at home, or be involved in curriculum design. Good programs maintain strong communication with parents, learning more about the child from the family and working together with the family to meet each child’s needs. Some ECE programs include occasional home visits as a way of maintaining a relationship between the program and parents. These approaches are the more typical, standard way of involving parents in early childhood programs.
http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd

https://drwilda.com/2012/05/30/missouri-program-parent-home-visits/

Home visits allow teachers to meet parents in a more comfortable setting and to intervene early.

Alan Scher Zagier of AP reported in the article, Teachers find home visits help in the classroom:

In days gone by, a knock on the door by a teacher or school official used to mean a child was in trouble. Not anymore, at least for parents and students at Clay Elementary School.
The urban public school is one of more than 30 in the St. Louis area that sends teachers on home visits several times a year. Unlike home visit programs that focus on truants and troublemakers, or efforts aimed exclusively at early childhood, the newer wave seeks to narrow the teacher-parent divide while providing glimpses at the factors that shape student learning before and after the school bells ring.
The nonprofit HOME WORKS! program is modeled after one in Sacramento, Calif., that over the past decade has since spread to more than 300 schools in 13 states, with active programs in Washington, Denver, Seattle and St. Paul, Minn. Program leaders say participation leads to better attendance, higher test scores, greater parental involvement and fewer suspensions and expulsions, citing preliminary research of the newer program by the University of Missouri-St. Louis and a series of external reviews in Sacramento over the past decade. Participation is voluntary, and teachers are paid for their time.
“We’ve figured out a way for people to sit down outside the regular school and have the most important conversation that needs to happen,” said Carrie Rose, executive director of the Parent Teacher Home Visit Project in the California capital.
The K-12 program began in 1999 as a faith-based community effort but quickly found support not only in the Sacramento school district but also with local teachers unions. The National Education Association has also endorsed teacher home visits, citing a “critical mass of research evidence” connecting high student achievement with involved parents.
No longer do parents only hear from teachers when there’s a problem, or during brief school conferences that leave little time to go beyond the surface….http://news.yahoo.com/teachers-home-visits-help-classroom-060213790.html?soc_src=mediacontentstory

Here is information about HOME WORKS!

HOME WORKS! Vision, Mission, Guiding Principles, & Core Values
Vision
Every child makes the grade.
Mission
HOME WORKS! The Teacher Home Visit Program partners families and teachers for children’s success.
Guiding Principles
We believe that:
• All children can learn.
• Learning creates opportunities.
• Families must play a key role in a child’s life path.
• Open, honest communication is essential.
• Individual differences must be respected.
Core Values
Collaboration, Diversity, Innovation, Integrity, Respect, Service, Transparency
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
• Does HOME WORKS! The Teacher Home Visit program use volunteers?
HOME WORKS! is all about building personal relationships between parents and their children’s educators. Because of the nature of the program, it does not use volunteers.
• How is HOME WORKS! funded? Where does the money come from?
HOME WORKS! is funded by donations from corporations, family foundations, and individuals. We have not received ANY funding from government sources or from The United Way – yet!
http://teacherhomevisit.org/

It is going to take coordination between not only education institutions, but a strong social support system to get many of children through school. This does not mean a large program directed from Washington. But, more resources at the local school level which allow discretion with accountability. For example, if I child is not coming to school because they have no shoes or winter coat, then the child gets new shoes and/or a coat. School breakfast and lunch programs must be supported and if necessary, expanded. Unfortunately, schools are now the early warning system for many families in crisis.

Related:

BBC report: Parents to be paid to attend parenting academy in England https://drwilda.com/2013/11/16/bbc-report-parents-to-be-paid-to-attend-parenting-academy-in-england/

Tips for parent and teacher conferences
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/07/tips-for-parent-and-teacher-conferences/

Common Sense Media report: Media choices at home affect school performance https://drwilda.com/2012/11/01/common-sense-media-report-media-choices-at-home-affect-school-performance/

Parents can use tax deductions to pay for special education needs https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/parents-can-use-tax-deductions-to-pay-for-special-education-needs/

Intervening in the lives of truant children by jailing parents https://drwilda.com/2012/10/07/intervening-in-the-lives-of-truant-children-by-jailing-parents/

Making time for family dinner
https://drwilda.com/2012/09/10/making-time-for-family-dinner/

Embracing parents as education leaders
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/28/embracing-parents-as-education-leaders/

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/

BBC report: Parents to be paid to attend parenting academy in England

16 Nov

Moi wrote in Parent involvement: Bronx’s Mercy College parent center:
Moi wrote about the importance of parental involvement in Missouri program: Parent home visits:
One of the mantras of this blog is that education is a partnership between the student, parent(s) or guardian(s), teacher(s), and the school. All parts of the partnership must be involved. 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 http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/15/national/class/OVERVIEW-FINAL.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Class Matters http://www.nytimes.com/pages/national/class/
Teachers and administrators as well as many politicians if they are honest know that children arrive at school at various points on the ready to learn continuum. Teachers have to teach children at whatever point on the continuum the children are. Jay Matthews reports in the Washington Post article, Try parent visits, not parent takeovers of schools. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/try-parent-visits-not-parent-takeovers-of-schools/2012/05/30/gJQAlDDz2U_story.html
The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement. http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd
https://drwilda.com/2012/05/30/missouri-program-parent-home-visits/
https://drwilda.com/2013/09/22/parent-involvement-bronxs-mercy-college-parent-center/

Educators, parents, and politicians all over the globe are trying to foster parent involvement

Judith Burns of the BBC reported in the BBC article, Cash for parents to learn how to support schoolwork:

Parents in two urban areas in England are to be offered money to attend a parenting academy to learn how to support their children’s schoolwork.
Some parents will be paid around £600 to attend all 18 sessions in the trial.
The scheme, for disadvantaged families, will test whether cash can encourage parents to help their children learn.
Brian Lightman, general secretary of the heads’ union ASCL, said parental engagement was a good thing but feared the payments could be seen as a bribe.
“We need to look at different ways of helping parents engage in their children’s learning but I have reservations about simply paying them,” said Mr Lightman.
But he added that the cash could be a genuinely positive thing if it were used, for example, to enable parents to take time off work to attend the courses.
Numeracy, literacy and science
The trial, funded by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), will run in 14 primary schools in Middlesbrough and Camden and will cost a total of almost £1m.
The idea is to equip parents with the skills to support their children’s learning in numeracy, literacy and science….
Some 1,500 parents and carers will be randomly divided into three groups.
One group will get free childcare and meals when they attend. A second group will not only get these benefits but will be paid for every session they attend. A third control group will not attend the sessions.
The attitudes and abilities of all the children with parents in the three groups will be assessed at the beginning and end of the project.
The idea is based on a US project, in which parents of pre-school children in an area of Chicago were paid up to $7,000 a year to attend two sessions a week aimed at boosting their basic maths and literacy as well as their knowledge of how to support teachers and help with homework….
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-24943762

Here is information about the Chicago Heights Miracle Project:

Chicago Heights Miracle Project
________________________________________
Rewarding Student Performance
Almost half of inner-city Americans fail to graduate from high school and most don’t make it to the 10th grade. In 2008, The Kenneth and Anne Griffin Foundation teamed up with University of Chicago economists John List and Steven Levitt (author of Freakonomics), and the Chicago Heights School District to test a unique incentive program, dubbed the Chicago Heights Miracle Project.
The aim of the project was to use cutting edge methods of investigation in behavioral economics to evaluate the impact of various incentives on student achievement.
Students were randomly assigned to one of four treatment groups, or to a control group. Each month in which a student met academic, behavioral, and attendance standards that student became eligible for an incentive.
• Eligible students in the first group earned $50 each month.
• Parents of eligible students in the second group received $50 each month.
• Eligible students in the third group were entered into a lottery for a chance to win $500.
• Eligible students in the fourth group were also entered into a lottery, but their parents received the prize money.
The most significant impact was seen on students who were falling just short of their established goals. For these students, the incentive program had lasting effects: they not only began to meet standards but continued to outperform the control group into 10th grade. The researchers agreed that incentives can play an important role in getting children—especially borderline children—through school. Knowledge gained from the Chicago Heights Miracle Project led to the development of the Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center.
Watch the movie trailer of Freakonomics which mentions Chicago Heights. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZfC-ZHJ4A5U
Read an article about Dr. List’s experiments in the Chicago Maroon, the University of Chicago newspaper. http://chicagomaroon.com/2009/5/15/professor-strives-to-test-economic-theories-in-real-life-experiments/
View the researchers’ presentation about the project.
http://www.griffin-foundation.org/areas/chicago-miracle-heights-project.html

It is going to take coordination between not only education institutions, but a strong social support system to get many of children through school. This does not mean a large program directed from Washington. But, more resources at the local school level which allow discretion with accountability. For example, if I child is not coming to school because they have no shoes or winter coat, then the child gets new shoes and/or a coat. School breakfast and lunch programs must be supported and if necessary, expanded. Unfortunately, schools are now the early warning system for many families in crisis.

Related:

Tips for parent and teacher conferences https://drwilda.com/2012/11/07/tips-for-parent-and-teacher-conferences/

Common Sense Media report: Media choices at home affect school performance https://drwilda.com/2012/11/01/common-sense-media-report-media-choices-at-home-affect-school-performance/

Parents can use tax deductions to pay for special education needs https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/parents-can-use-tax-deductions-to-pay-for-special-education-needs/

Intervening in the lives of truant children by jailing parents https://drwilda.com/2012/10/07/intervening-in-the-lives-of-truant-children-by-jailing-parents/

Making time for family dinner https://drwilda.com/2012/09/10/making-time-for-family-dinner/

Embracing parents as education leaders
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/28/embracing-parents-as-education-leaders/

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/

University of Wisconsin study: Children who are mistreated have permanent scars on their brain

13 Nov

Moi wrote in University of Oregon study: Abusive parenting may have biological link: Moi wrote in University of Pittsburgh study: Harsh verbal discipline is not effective;
The question is how to find a balance between “Tiger Mom” and phony self-esteem.
In No one is perfect: People sometimes fail, moi said:
The Child Development Institute has a good article about how to help your child develop healthy self- esteem. A discussion of values is often difficult, but the question the stage parent, over the top little league father, or out of control soccer mom should ask of themselves is what do you really and truly value? What is more important, your child’s happiness and self-esteem or your fulfilling an unfinished part of your life through your child? Joe Jackson, the winner of the most heinous stage parent award saw his dreams fulfilled with the price of the destruction of his children’s lives. Most people with a healthy dose of self-esteem and sanity would say this is too high a price.
https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/12/06/no-one-is-perfect-people-sometimes-fail/ https://drwilda.com/tag/is-tough-parenting-really-the-answer/

Science Daily reported in the article, Abusive Parenting May Have a Biological Basis:

Parents who physically abuse their children appear to have a physiological response that subsequently triggers more harsh parenting when they attempt parenting in warm, positive ways, according to new research….
Studies of child maltreatment have consistently found that parents who physically abuse their children tend to parent in more hostile, critical and controlling ways. Skowron’s team appears to have found evidence of a physiological basis for patterns of aversive parenting — the use of hostile actions such as grabbing an arm or hand or using negative verbal cues in guiding a child’s behavior — in a sample of families involved with Child Protective Services.
For the experiment, mothers and children were monitored to record changes in heart rate while playing together in the lab. Parenting behavior was scored to capture positive parenting and strict, hostile control using a standard coding system.
What emerged, Skowron said, were clear distinctions between abusive, neglectful and non-maltreating mothers in their physiological responses during parenting. When abusive mothers were more warm and nurturing, they began to experience more difficulty regulating their heart rate and staying calm. This physiological-based stress response then led the abusive mothers to become more hostile and controlling toward their child a short time later in the interaction.
The same was not the case for mothers who had been previously identified as being physically neglectful or for mothers with no history of neglectful or abusive parenting.
Participants in the National Institutes of Health-funded study were 141 mothers — 94 percent Caucasian with a high school degree or less and incomes at or below $30,000 — and their children, ranged in age from 3 to 5 years old. The research focuses on tracking the effects of physiology on parenting in real time.
“Abusive mothers who try to warmly support their child when the child faced a moderate challenge displayed a physiological response that suggested they’re stressed, on alert and preparing to defend against a threat of some kind,” said Skowron, a researcher at the Child and Family Center/Prevention Science Institute at the UO. “This kind of physiological response then led to a shift in an abusive mother becoming more hostile, strict, and controlling ways with her young child, regardless of how her child was behaving.”
The findings, she added, suggest that when physically abusive mothers experience being a nurturing parent they find it to be hard work. “It appears to quickly wear them out, perhaps because it challenges them in ways that lower-risk mothers don’t experience,” she said. “An abusive mother appears caught: When she does a good job with her child, it costs her physiologically, and it negatively affects her because it leads to more aversive parenting….”http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/13100.

https://drwilda.com/2013/10/16/university-of-oregon-study-abusive-parenting-may-have-biological-link/

A University of Wisconsin study examined the effect abusive parents have on their children.

Jon Hamilton of NPR reported in the story, Childhood Maltreatment Can Leave Scars In The Brain:

Maltreatment during childhood can lead to long-term changes in brain circuits that process fear, researchers say. This could help explain why children who suffer abuse are much more likely than others to develop problems like anxiety and depression later on.
Brain scans of teenagers revealed weaker connections between the prefrontal cortex and the hippocampus in both boys and girls who had been maltreated as children, a team from the University of Wisconsin reports in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Girls who had been maltreated also had relatively weak connections between the prefrontal cortex the amygdala.
Those weaker connections “actually mediated or led to the development of anxiety and depressive symptoms by late adolescence,” says Ryan Herringa, a psychiatrist at the University of Wisconsin and one of the study’s authors.
Maltreatment can be physical or emotional, and it ranges from mild to severe. So the researchers asked a group of 64 fairly typical 18-year-olds to answer a questionnaire designed to assess childhood trauma. The teens are part of a larger study that has been tracking children’s social and emotional development in more than 500 families since 1994.
The participants were asked how strongly they agreed or disagreed with statements like, “When I was growing up I didn’t have enough to eat,” or “My parents were too drunk or high to take care of the family,” or “Somebody in my family hit me so hard that it left me with bruises or marks.”
There were also statements about emotional and sexual abuse. The responses indicated that some had been maltreated in childhood while others hadn’t.
All of the participants had their brains scanned using a special type of MRI to measure the strength of connections among three areas of the brain involved in processing fear…http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/11/04/242945454/childhood-maltreatment-can-leave-scars-in-the-brain?utm_medium=Email&utm_source=share&utm_campaign=

Citation:

Childhood maltreatment is associated with altered fear circuitry and increased internalizing symptoms by late adolescence
1. Ryan J. Herringaa,1,2,
2. Rasmus M. Birna,b,1,
3. Paula L. Ruttlea,
4. Cory A. Burghyc,
5. Diane E. Stodolac,
6. Richard J. Davidsona,c,d, and
7. Marilyn J. Essexa,2
Author Affiliations
1. Edited by Huda Akil, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, and approved October 7, 2013 (received for review June 6, 2013)
Significance
Childhood maltreatment is a major risk factor for internalizing disorders including depression and anxiety, which cause significant disability. Altered connectivity of the brain’s fear circuitry represents an important candidate mechanism linking maltreatment and these disorders, but this relationship has not been directly explored. Using resting-state functional brain connectivity in adolescents, we show that maltreatment predicts lower prefrontal–hippocampal connectivity in females and males but lower prefrontal–amygdala connectivity only in females. Altered connectivity, in turn, mediated the development of internalizing symptoms. These results highlight the importance of fronto–hippocampal connectivity for both sexes in internalizing symptoms following maltreatment. The additional impact on fronto–amygdala connectivity in females may help explain their higher risk for anxiety and depression.
Abstract
Maltreatment during childhood is a major risk factor for anxiety and depression, which are major public health problems. However, the underlying brain mechanism linking maltreatment and internalizing disorders remains poorly understood. Maltreatment may alter the activation of fear circuitry, but little is known about its impact on the connectivity of this circuitry in adolescence and whether such brain changes actually lead to internalizing symptoms. We examined the associations between experiences of maltreatment during childhood, resting-state functional brain connectivity (rs-FC) of the amygdala and hippocampus, and internalizing symptoms in 64 adolescents participating in a longitudinal community study. Childhood experiences of maltreatment were associated with lower hippocampus–subgenual cingulate rs-FC in both adolescent females and males and lower amygdala–subgenual cingulate rs-FC in females only. Furthermore, rs-FC mediated the association of maltreatment during childhood with adolescent internalizing symptoms. Thus, maltreatment in childhood, even at the lower severity levels found in a community sample, may alter the regulatory capacity of the brain’s fear circuit, leading to increased internalizing symptoms by late adolescence. These findings highlight the importance of fronto–hippocampal connectivity for both sexes in internalizing symptoms following maltreatment in childhood. Furthermore, the impact of maltreatment during childhood on both fronto–amygdala and –hippocampal connectivity in females may help explain their higher risk for internalizing disorders such as anxiety and depression.
• child maltreatment

• sex differences

• ventromedial prefrontal cortex
Footnotes
• 1R.J.H. and R.M.B. contributed equally to this work.
• 2To whom correspondence may be addressed. E-mail: herringa@wisc.edu or mjessex@wisc.edu.
• Author contributions: R.J.H., R.J.D., and M.J.E. designed research; R.J.H., R.M.B., C.A.B., and M.J.E. performed research; R.J.H., R.M.B., P.L.R., C.A.B., D.E.S., and M.J.E. analyzed data; and R.J.H., R.M.B., P.L.R., C.A.B., R.J.D., and M.J.E. wrote the paper.
• The authors declare no conflict of interest.
• This article is a PNAS Direct Submission.
• This article contains supporting information online at http://www.pnas.org/lookup/suppl/doi:10.1073/pnas.1310766110/-/DCSupplemental.

Helping parents and caretakers to respond appropriately to children is crucial to stopping the cycle of abuse.

Moi wrote in Missouri program: Parent home visits:
The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement.

In Parents As Partners in Early Education, the Council reports:

Researchers generally agree that parents and family are the primary influence on a child’s development. Parents, grandparents, foster parents and others who take on parenting
roles strongly affect language development, emotional growth, social skills and personality. High quality
early childhood programs engage parents as partners in early education, encouraging them to volunteer in programs, read to their children at home, or be involved in curriculum design. Good programs maintain strong communication with parents, learning more about the child from the family and working together with the family to meet each child’s needs. Some ECE programs include occasional home visits as a way of maintaining a relationship between the program and parents. These approaches are the more typical, standard way of involving parents in early childhood programs.
http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd

It is going to take coordination between not only education institutions, but a strong social support system to get many of children through school. This does not mean a large program directed from Washington. But, more resources at the local school level which allow discretion with accountability. For example, if I child is not coming to school because they have no shoes or winter coat, then the child gets new shoes and/or a coat. School breakfast and lunch programs must be supported and if necessary, expanded. Unfortunately, schools are now the early warning system for many families in crisis.

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/

Parent involvement: Bronx’s Mercy College parent center

22 Sep

Moi wrote about the importance of parental involvement in Missouri program: Parent home visits:
One of the mantras of this blog is that education is a partnership between the student, parent(s) or guardian(s), teacher(s), and the school. All parts of the partnership must be involved. 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 http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/15/national/class/OVERVIEW-FINAL.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0describes the challenges faced by schools trying to overcome the disparity in education. The complete series can be found at Class Matters http://www.nytimes.com/pages/national/class/
Teachers and administrators as well as many politicians if they are honest know that children arrive at school at various points on the ready to learn continuum. Teachers have to teach children at whatever point on the continuum the children are. Jay Matthews reports in the Washington Post article, Try parent visits, not parent takeovers of schools. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/try-parent-visits-not-parent-takeovers-of-schools/2012/05/30/gJQAlDDz2U_story.html
The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement. http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd
https://drwilda.com/2012/05/30/missouri-program-parent-home-visits/

Karla Scoon Reid reported in the Education Week article, Mercy College education school reaches out:

Last fall, Mercy College opened the Bronx Parent Center to help improve student achievement by teaching, training, and supporting parents to become education advocates and active partners in their children’s schooling. The center wants to provide meaningful and individualized support for parents to assist their children academically, socially, and behaviorally from kindergarten through college.
Service Learning
The effort has also become a service-learning project for Mercy College, whose professors are donating their time to work with parents.
“This is an opportunity for our faculty to go back and work with the schools in a concerted way,” said Aramina Vega Ferrer, the center’s director and an associate professor of literacy and multilingual studies at the college.
About 200 parents have participated in the college’s workshops, and some, like Ms. Fernandez-Haghighi, have helped lead sessions. The center offers workshops throughout the school year covering topics that include strategies for children with special needs, technology, math instruction, reading, and parent leadership.
School-based parent centers are already open at two Bronx schools, and plans are underway to conduct quantitative and qualitative research to evaluate the Bronx Parent Center’s programs and identify best practices. In the future, Mercy College’s teacher-candidates will be involved with the center.
And while the center’s focus has been on Bronx public schools, which serve predominantly low-income and minority students, the college’s faculty is working with a parent group from suburban school districts in Westchester County, N.Y., as well.
“We know how to work with parents and not blame them,” stressed Ms. Ferrer, a former principal of Public School 46 in the Bronx, which also is working with the parent center. “We’re doing this to improve education.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2013/09/18/04parents.h33.html?tkn=ZZOF%2BydC5VbhI3uLSLZt0ppQj7%2BPmBWEXOG8&cmp=clp-edweek&intc=es

Patrick Rocchio reported about the programs of the center in Mercy College Parent Center opens:

The Bronx Parent Center, a new program and space to teach parents the skills that classroom teachers use to educate kids so that they can help give their own children get a leg up.
The program was designed by Mercy’s education department faculty for parents to support their children’s education through workshops, resources, and leadership development.
“The new program will help empower parents and provide them with the knowledge and the skills to support their children’s educational experience,” said Diaz, at a ribbon cutter for the new lab, for which he provided funding.
The program will empower parents as they interact with teachers and policy makers, said Diaz, who provided funding for the cendter.
He was joined by Mercy College president Kimberly Cline, who called the center “a culmination of a dream.”
School of Education dean Alfred Posamentier called it an example “for the rest of the region to follow, since we strongly believe that parents are the most neglected part of the ‘education equation.
The center will offer parents monthy workshops on topics including managing problem behavior, strategies to support special needs kids, helping with math, read-aloud strategies, parent leadership, and hands-on technology. It will so free of much educational jargon, said program director Aramina Vega Ferrer.
“We are going to talk plainly to parents, but we are going to engage them in strategies that teachers use in the classroom – we are bringing those strageies to them,” said Ferrer. “We are going to model them, have them practice it, and then we are going to observe them doing some of these things with their own children.”
The program’s seminars and study groups will be focusing on three C’s – consistant, coherent, and comprehensive, said Ferrer.

See, Mercy College Parent Center opens http://www.bxtimes.com/stories/2012/40/40_mercy_2012_10_04_bx.html and Mercy College Parent Center http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Msicu_UiJc
It is going to take coordination between not only education institutions, but a strong social support system to get many of children through school. This does not mean a large program directed from Washington. But, more resources at the local school level which allow discretion with accountability. For example, if I child is not coming to school because they have no shoes or winter coat, then the child gets new shoes and/or a coat. School breakfast and lunch programs must be supported and if necessary, expanded. Unfortunately, schools are now the early warning system for many families in crisis.

Related:
Tips for parent and teacher conferences

https://drwilda.com/2012/11/07/tips-for-parent-and-teacher-conferences/

Common Sense Media report: Media choices at home affect school performance
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/01/common-sense-media-report-media-choices-at-home-affect-school-performance/

Parents can use tax deductions to pay for special education needs
https://drwilda.com/2012/10/24/parents-can-use-tax-deductions-to-pay-for-special-education-needs/

Intervening in the lives of truant children by jailing parents
https://drwilda.com/2012/10/07/intervening-in-the-lives-of-truant-children-by-jailing-parents/

Making time for family dinner
https://drwilda.com/2012/09/10/making-time-for-family-dinner/

Embracing parents as education leaders
https://drwilda.com/2012/11/28/embracing-parents-as-education-leaders/

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 © h
https://drwilda.com/

Final report of ‘Head Start’ study: Early gains may not last

25 Dec

In Embracing parents as education leaders, moi said:

Moi wrote about the importance of parental involvement in Missouri program: Parent home visits:

One of the mantras of this blog is that education is a partnership between the student, parent(s) or guardian(s), teacher(s), and the school. All parts of the partnership must be involved.  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 Class Matters

Teachers and administrators as well as many politicians if they are honest know that children arrive at school at various points on the ready to learn continuum. Teachers have to teach children at whatever point on the continuum the children are. Jay Matthews reports in the Washington Post article, Try parent visits, not parent takeovers of schools. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/try-parent-visits-not-parent-takeovers-of-schools/2012/05/30/gJQAlDDz2U_story.html

The key ingredient is parental involvement. The Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (Council) has a great policy brief on parental involvement.http://www.wccf.org/pdf/parentsaspartners_ece-series.pd

https://drwilda.com/2012/05/30/missouri-program-parent-home-visits/

Julia Lawrence of Education News reports in the article, Kentucky Venture Aims to Train Parents to Become Ed Leaders:

When the Governor’s Commonwealth Institute for Parent Leadership opens its doors in Kentucky, it will do so with the goal of getting parents more involved in their children’s academic lives. The Institute’s mission will be to empower parents to take a more active role in determining the future direction of their local education system, which includes greater participation in parent-teacher groups, local school boards and school councils.

Kentucky residents who wish to get involved will have an opportunity to enroll in a 24-month mentoring program offered by the Institute, which will introduce them to the ins and outs of the state’s academic system. Institute leaders say that parents will graduate from the course having learned “the business of education,” leaving them more able to understand the problems confronting state schools today.

Their attempts at involvement will no longer be thwarted by unfamiliar jargon and impenetrable quantitative reports. The goal at graduation will be to have parents not only fully cognizant of the current issues facing K-12 education in the state but also ready to provide solutions for those issues as well….

The CIPL will be building on top of the work done by the existing Commonwealth Institute for Parent Leadership, which has been working for more than 15 years on ways to keep parents in the loop on education. Over 1,600 Kentucky parents have gone through the programs offered by the CIPL, with many going on to take leadership positions in their schools, districts and even at state level. According to KYForward.com, CIPL boasts recruiting two people who have served on the Kentucky Board of Education.

Furthermore, as CIPL expanded its reach, it created a self-perpetuating network among the state’s parents. Those who go through CIPL later go on to recruit and mentor up to 20 other parents each – all in service of giving parents a greater voice in their children’s education…..

In the end, the aim of the Institute is to convince parents that with the right preparation they can have a real, positive impact on student achievement statewide.  http://www.educationnews.org/parenting/kys-new-venture-aims-to-train-parents-to-become-ed-leaders/

https://drwilda.com/2012/11/28/embracing-parents-as-education-leaders/

Parental support is a key ingredient in learning.

Lesli A. Maxwell reports in the Education Week article, Head Start Advantages Mostly Gone by 3rd Grade, Study Finds:

In the first phase of the evaluation, a group of children who entered Head Start at age 4 saw benefits from spending one year in the program, including learning vocabulary, letter-word recognition, spelling, color identification, and letter-naming, compared with children of the same age in a control group who didn’t attend Head Start. For children who entered Head Start at age 3, the gains were even greater, demonstrated by their language and literacy skills, as well their skills in learning math, prewriting, and perceptual motor skills.

The second phase of the study showed that those gains had faded considerably by the end of 1st grade, with Head Start children showing an edge only in learning vocabulary over their peers in the control group who had not participated in Head Start.

And now, in this final phase of the study, “there was little evidence of systematic differences in children’s elementary school experiences through 3rd grade, between children provided access to Head Start and their counterparts in the control group,” the researchers wrote in an executive summary…

Specifically, by the end of 3rd grade, 4-year-old Head Start participants showed only a single advantage in the areas of literacy, numeracy, and school performance over their peers in the control group. Only their performance on one reading assessment showed that they still retained some benefit over their control group counterparts. But, according to the study, their participation in Head Start showed no significant positive impacts on math skills, prewriting, promotion, or teachers’ reports of children’s school accomplishments. About 40 percent of the children in the control group did not receive formal preschool services; the rest did, just not through Head Start.

In the 3-year-old cohort, researchers found a learning disadvantage for those who had been in Head Start. Parents of the Head Start children reported lower rates of grade promotion than parents of the students who were not in the Head Start group….

When researchers examined the impacts on children’s social-emotional development, their findings were significantly different for the two age groups. For 4-year-olds, parents of Head Start participants reported less aggressive behavior at the end of 3rd grade than did the parents of the control group children. In contrast, teachers reported higher incidences of emotional problems in Head Start students, and less positive relationships with them. For the 3-year-old group, parents of Head Start participants reported better social skills in their children, compared to the control group parents.

In examining impacts on health, the researchers similarly found no remaining advantages of Head Start participation at the end of 3rd grade. Parenting practices however, still showed some positive benefits of Head Start participation in both age groups. For 4-year-olds in the Head Start group, parents reported spending more time with their children than did the control group parents, and in the 3-year-old group, researchers found that parents in the Head Start group were more likely to use a parenting style characterized by high warmth and high control.

Yasmina Vinci, the executive director of the National Head Start Association, called the vanishing impacts of Head Start in the early grades “troubling,” but noted that Head Start does its core job well by preparing disadvantaged children for kindergarten. “Our work with students ends when children graduate from Head Start, but it is clear that for many, their circumstances continue to hinder their success; circumstances including, but not limited to, the quality of their primary and secondary education,” she said in a prepared statement.

Ms. Guernsey said to sustain the positive impacts of any early-learning experience into the first years of elementary school requires more emphasis on improvements in kindergarten, first, and second grades.

“The idea that one or two years of preschool is a silver bullet really needs to be stripped from our minds,” she said. “The impact study from two years ago and this one now reminds us that the quality of the learning experience in kindergarten, first grade, and second grade really matters too.” http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/early_years/2012/12/head_start_advantages_mostly_gone_by_third_grade_study_finds.html

Here are some key points from the executive summary:

Key Findings

Looking across the full study period, from the beginning of Head Start through 3rd grade, the evidence is clear that access to Head Start improved children’s preschool outcomes across developmental domains, but had few impacts on children in kindergarten through 3rd grade. Providing access to Head Start was found to have a positive impact on the types and quality of preschool programs that children attended, with the study finding statistically significant differences between the Head Start group and the control group on every measure of children’s preschool experiences in the first year of the study. In contrast, there was little evidence of systematic differences in children’s elementary school experiences through 3rd grade, between children provided access to Head Start and their counterparts in the control group.

In terms of children’s well-being, there is also clear evidence that access to Head Start had an impact on children’s language and literacy development while children were in Head Start. These effects, albeit modest in magnitude, were found for both age cohorts during their first year of admission to the Head Start program. However, these early effects rapidly dissipated in elementary school, with only a single impact remaining at the end of 3rd grade for children in each age cohort.

With regard to children’s social-emotional development, the results differed by age cohort and by the person describing the child’s behavior. For children in the 4-year-old cohort, there were no observed impacts through the end of kindergarten but favorable impacts reported by parents and unfavorable impacts reported by teachers emerged at the end of 1st and 3rd grades. One unfavorable impact on the children’s self-report emerged at the end of 3rd grade. In contrast to the 4-year-old cohort, for the 3-year-old cohort there were favorable impacts on parent-reported social emotional outcomes in the early years of the study that continued into early elementary school. However, there were no impacts on teacher-reported measures of social-emotional development for the 3-year-old cohort at any data collection point or on the children’s self-reports in 3rd grade.

In the health domain, early favorable impacts were noted for both age cohorts, but by the end of 3rd grade, there were no remaining impacts for either age cohort. Finally, with regard to parenting practices, the impacts were concentrated in the younger cohort. For the 4-year-old cohort, there was one favorable impact across the years while there were several favorable impacts on parenting approaches and parent-child activities and interactions (all reported by parents) across the years for the 3-year-old cohort.

In summary, there were initial positive impacts from having access to Head Start, but by the end of 3rd grade there were very few impacts found for either cohort in any of the four domains of cognitive, social-emotional, health and parenting practices. The few impacts that were found did not show a clear pattern of favorable or unfavorable impacts for children.

In addition to looking at Head Start’s average impact across the diverse set of children and families who participated in the program, the study also examined how impacts varied among different types of participants. There is evidence that for some outcomes, Head Start had a differential impact for some subgroups of children over others. At the end of 3rd grade for the 3-year-old cohort, the most striking sustained subgroup findings were found in the cognitive domain for children from high risk households as well as for children of parents who reported no depressive symptoms. Among the 4-year-olds, sustained benefits were experienced by children of parents who reported mild depressive symptoms, severe depressive symptoms, and Black children. http://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/opre/head_start_executive_summary.pdf

In addition to parent support affecting education outcome, another major factor is the impact of poverty.

In Study: Poverty affects education attainment, moi said:

In 3rd world America: Money changes everything, moi wrote:

The increased rate of poverty has profound implications if this society believes that ALL children have the right to a good basic education. Moi blogs about education issues so the reader could be perplexed sometimes because moi often writes about other things like nutrition, families, and personal responsibility issues. Why? The reader might ask? Because children will have the most success in school if they are ready to learn. Ready to learn includes proper nutrition for a healthy body and the optimum situation for children is a healthy family. Many of societies’ problems would be lessened if the goal was a healthy child in a healthy family. There is a lot of economic stress in the country now because of unemployment and underemployment. Children feel the stress of their parents and they worry about how stable their family and living situation is.

Sabrina Tavernise wrote an excellent New York Times article, Education Gap Grows Between Rich and Poor, Studies Say:

It is a well-known fact that children from affluent families tend to do better in school. Yet the income divide has received far less attention from policy makers and government officials than gaps in student accomplishment by race.

Now, in analyses of long-term data published in recent months, researchers are finding that while the achievement gap between white and black students has narrowed significantly over the past few decades, the gap between rich and poor students has grown substantially during the same period….http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/10/education/education-gap-grows-between-rich-and-poor-studies-show.html?emc=eta1

Teachers and schools have been made TOTALLY responsible for the education outcome of the children, many of whom come to school not ready to learn and who reside in families that for a variety of reasons cannot support their education. All children are capable of learning, but a one-size-fits-all approach does not serve all children well. Different populations of children will require different strategies and some children will require remedial help, early intervention, and family support to achieve their education goals.

Richard D. Kahlenberg, , a senior fellow at The Century Foundation wrote the informative Washington Post article, How to attack the growing educational gap between rich and poor. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/how-to-attack-the-growing-educational-gap-between-rich-and-poor/2012/02/10/gIQArDOg4Q_blog.html

There is no magic bullet or “Holy Grail” in education. There is only what works to produce academic achievement in each population of children. That is why school choice is so important. https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/02/11/3rd-world-america-money-changes-everything/

https://drwilda.com/2012/08/29/study-poverty-affects-education-attainment/

Related:

Tips for parent and teacher conferences                                    https://drwilda.com/2012/11/07/tips-for-parent-and-teacher-conferences/

Common Sense Media report: Media choices at home affect school performance                                                                      https://drwilda.com/2012/11/01/common-sense-media-report-media-choices-at-home-affect-school-performance/

Making time for family dinner                                                       https://drwilda.com/2012/09/10/making-time-for-family-dinner/ 

Policy brief: The fiscal and educational benefits of universal universal preschool https://drwilda.com/2012/11/25/policy-brief-the-fiscal-and-educational-benefits-of-universal-universal-preschool/

Studies: Lack of support and early parenthood cause kids to dropout                                                                                https://drwilda.com/2012/11/19/studies-lack-of-support-and-early-parenthood-cause-kids-to-dropout/

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