In some NC counties, traditional schools are being squeezed by charters

January 31, 2019

Charter school enrollment in North Carolina has grown by more than 200 percent in the past 10 years. Today, there 109,389 students being served by charter schools, about 7.3 percent of the total public school population of 1.5 million. CCFP faculty fellow Helen Ladd has concerns about the growth in rural areas because of the burdens they place on school districts. She explains in NC Policy Watch that charters often leave traditional schools with students that are more challenging to educate. “They [charter schools] attract the ones who are less costly to educate and what that does is impose cost on the remaining traditional public schools,” says Ladd.


NC Policy Watch »

New study finds pre-k benefits endure through eighth grade

January 22, 2019

New research from the Duke Center for Child and Family Policy was featured on NBC Nightly News as part of a story about the benefits of Pre-K. In a newly released working paper, Kenneth Dodge, former director of the Center, Clara Muschkin, Helen “Sunny” Ladd and Yu Bai, share findings from their analyses, which show the benefits of Pre-K last longer than previously thought — through eighth grade and possibly even beyond. NBC Correspondent Kerry Sanders interviewed Dodge about these benefits during the episode, which aired January 20.



NBC Nightly News »

Benefits of Pre-K do not fade with age

Kindergarten teacher and children with hands raised in library January 14, 2019

New analyses from the Center for Child and Family Policy reveal that positive benefits of NC Pre-K and Smart Start do not fade with age. Ken Dodge writes in the News & Observer about findings from his recently released working paper, co-authored by Helen Ladd, Clara Muschkin, and Yu Bai, which show that the positive impacts of NC Pre-K and Smart Start continue through grades 6, 7, and 8 grades. By eighth grade, for children in counties with average funding, NC Pre-K has reduced the likelihood of placements into special education by over one third. Dodge writes, “To grow these benefits, state funding for these early childhood programs must grow and must be coupled with equally healthy funding for high-quality public schools.”

News & Observer »

Adolescents who self-harm more likely to commit violent crime

January 4, 2019

Young people who self-harm are three times more likely to commit violent crime than those who do not, according to new research from the Duke Center for Child and Family Policy. The study, published in The American Journal of Psychiatry, also found young people who harm themselves and commit violent crime — “dual harmers” — are more likely to have a history of childhood maltreatment and lower self-control than those who only self-harm. “We know that some individuals who self-harm also inflict harm on others,” Leah Richmond-Rakerd, lead author of the study. “What has not been clear is whether there are early-life characteristics or experiences that increase the risk of violent offending among individuals who self-harm. Identifying these risk factors could guide interventions that prevent and reduce interpersonal violence.”

US News & World Report » MedPage Today » HealthDay » Medical Xpress » » Tech Explorist » Business Standard »

Family Connects Featured on CBS This Morning

Kenneth Dodge, Duke University, and Dr. Tara Narula, CBS News, walking down hallway, talking January 2, 2019

Family Connects International, a nurse home visit program initiated by Kenneth Dodge, former director of the Center, was featured on CBS This Morning.  Family Connects is a community-wide nurse home visiting program for parents of newborns, with a goal to increase child well-being by bridging the gap between parent needs and community resources.

CBS This Morning »

Low-income parents want a white picket fence, not just money, before getting married

Bridge and Groom cutting wedding cake November 29, 2018

Marriage rates in the U.S. are declining, especially among the lowest-income Americans. However, in October, wage growth in the U.S. hit a nine-year high, with low-wage workers seeing some of the biggest gains. Some scholars have suggested that if low-income people have more money, they might be more likely to get married. But according to findings from a new study by Center Faculty Fellows Christina Gibson-Davis and Anna Gassman-Pines, couples want more than just more money to get married. They want the white picket fence.

The Conversation »

Home visits for new moms offer a more robust social safety net in Tulsa

Kenneth Dodge, Duke University November 27, 2018

Family Connects International has inspired a free nurse home visiting program for new moms in Tulsa.  The visits, modeled on Durham Connects in Durham, N.C., are part of the city’s initiative to build a more robust social safety net in a state where public services have suffered repeated deep cuts.

In addition to the nurse’s expertise, families in Durham benefited from referrals to community resources that they might not otherwise have accessed, says Kenneth Dodge, former director of the Center who helped develop Durham Connects.

Christian Science Monitor »

Sandy Darity Has a Plan to Close the Wealth Gap

William "Sandy" Darity November 5, 2018

Center faculty fellow William “Sandy” Darity discusses his idea of “baby bonds,” a proposed solution for closing the wealth gap, on the latest episode of The Ezra Klein Show podcast. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) recently introduced legislation that builds off Darity’s concept and aims to provide every American child, at birth, with seed capital that they can use to go to college, buy a home, start a business, or build wealth in other ways.

The Ezra Klein Show by Vox Media »

New ‘Redshirting’ Study Reveals That Boys Are Held Back More Than Girls — and It’s Actually Helping to Close an Achievement Gap Between the Genders

Philip Cook, Duke University October 24, 2018

The impact of “redshirting” — the practice of holding a child back a year before they enter kindergarten — has important, surprising effects on student achievement gaps, according to new study from Center Faculty Fellow Phil Cook. Using data from the North Carolina Education Research Data Center, Cook found the extra year of age for students in NC is positive: older students were 1.6 percent less likely to be diagnosed as learning disabled, 1 percent less likely to be speech impaired, and 2.3 percent more likely to be classified as intellectually gifted. He also identified male students in NC are much more likely to be redshirted than females. However the most interesting takeaway, according to Cook, is that “the likelihood of redshirting is strongly inversely related to academic ability.”

The 74 »