Maternal Education Preferences Moderate the Effects of Mandatory Employment and Education Programs on Child Positive and Problem Behaviors

Anna Gassman-Pines, Erin B. Godfrey, Hirokazu Yoshikawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Grounded in person-environment fit theory, this study examined whether low-income mothers' preferences for education moderated the effects of employment- and education-focused welfare programs on children's positive and problem behaviors. The sample included 1,365 families with children between ages 3 and 5years at study entry. Results 5years after random assignment, when children were ages 8-10years, indicated that mothers' education preferences did moderate program impacts on teacher-reported child behavior problems and positive behavior. Children whose mothers were assigned to the education program were rated by teachers to have less externalizing behavior and more positive behavior than children whose mothers were assigned to the employment program but only when mothers had strong preferences for education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)198-208
Number of pages11
JournalChild development
Volume84
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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