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Parent Involvement and Children’s Academic and Social Development in Elementary School

Authors


  • This research was supported by a grant to Heather J. Bachman and Elizabeth Votruba-Drzal from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD; 1RO3HD056019-01A1). This study was conducted by the NICHD Early Child Care Research Network supported by NICHD through a cooperative agreement that calls for scientific collaboration between the grantees and the NICHD staff. An earlier version of this article was presented at the 2009 SRCD Conference. We would like to thank our discussant, Eric Dearing, as well as the anonymous referees for their comments. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily reflect the views of the NICHD. We would also like to thank Roli Mohan, Stephanie Davis, and Carolina Maldonado-Carreño for their assistance with data management. A special thanks is also extended to the children and families who participated in the NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development.

concerning this article should be addressed to Nermeen E. El Nokali, Department of Psychology in Education, School of Education, University of Pittsburgh, 5930 Posvar Hall, Pittsburgh, PA 15260. Electronic mail may be sent to nee5@pitt.edu.

Abstract

Data from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Study of Early Childcare and Youth Development (= 1,364) were used to investigate children’s trajectories of academic and social development across 1st, 3rd, and 5th grades. Hierarchical linear modeling was used to examine within- and between-child associations among maternal and teacher reports of parent involvement and children’s standardized achievement scores, social skills, and problem behaviors. Findings suggest that within-child improvements in parent involvement predict declines in problem behaviors and improvements in social skills but do not predict changes in achievement. Between-child analyses demonstrated that children with highly involved parents had enhanced social functioning and fewer behavior problems. Similar patterns of findings emerged for teacher and parent reports of parent involvement. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.

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