|Title||Living in non-parental care moderates effects of prekindergarten experiences on externalizing behavior problems in school|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2014|
|Authors||Lipscomb, ST, Schmitt, SA, Pratt, M, Acock, A, Pears, KC|
|Journal||Children and Youth Services Review|
|Pagination||41 - 50|
The current study examines the effects of prekindergarten quality and quantity on externalizing behavior problems for children living in non-parental care, compared to other children from socioeconomically at-risk backgrounds. Data were obtained from the Head Start Impact Study. Non-parental care was defined as a primary caregiver other than a biological, adoptive, or step-parent. The sample included 3029 children who attended center-based prekindergarten. Teacher-child conflict and more hours of prekindergarten predicted increased externalizing behavior problems for the full sample. Teacher-child closeness and overall process quality were only associated with externalizing behavior for children in non-parental care. Findings are discussed within a goodness-of-fit perspective in which the vulnerabilities of children in non-parental care explain how they respond to their prekindergarten experiences.