It’s Not What You Say it’s What You Do: School Diversity Ideologies and Adolescent Mental Health and Academic Engagement

Project Description

Family child care homes (FCCHs) are an important part of the early care and education system in North Carolina. While they make up only about a quarter of licensed care providers, they provide a critical service especially to families that work non-traditional hours, reside in rural communities or speak primary languages other than English. Despite this important role, the number of FCCHs has been steadily decreasing, contributing the existing shortage of affordable child care slots in our state and worsening access issues for many families that need care. In 2022, the North Carolina Division of Child Development and Early Education (NCDCDEE) completed a needs assessment update as part of their Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five (PDG B-5). Duke’s Center for Child and Family Policy (CCFP) served as a key partner in this effort. Findings from this needs assessment highlighted the troubling decline in FCCHs in North Carolina over the past few decades and spurred NCDCDEE to further explore this issue, with the aim of identifying the challenges and barriers contributing to this decline and developing recommendations to inform policymaking.

Project Goals

NCDCDEE contracted with the Hunt Institute, Afton and CCFP to

  • conduct a comprehensive literature review,
  • develop maps that illustrate child care deserts within the state,
  • collect qualitative data from key stakeholders, and
  • develop policy recommendations focused on these issues.

CCFP researchers will facilitate stakeholder roundtables, conduct interviews with key state leaders in the ECE space, and lead parent and provider advisory panels with the goal of helping to answer the key research questions including:

  1. What barriers and challenges do family child care home providers experience with opening, operating, and/or expanding their business?
  2. Where are child care deserts across the country and in North Carolina?

 

Project Description

This study will collect data from approximately 750 university students in Ukraine in the winter of 2023. Self-reported data will include measures on adjustment, well-being, outlook, substance use, stress,  and other factors. One-third of the participants provided data during the winter of 2022-23, which will allow researchers to study changes in student well-being over time. In addition to surveying students, parents of young people in the study will also be invited to participate. Data will be used to identify profiles and predictors of risk and resilience and will provide a description of Ukrainian youth mental health during the military invasion.  This research will provide insight into how best to support the mental health of young people during a global crisis.

Project Goals

This project will study what factors influence how adolescents, young adults and their parents are adjusting during a military invasion in four regions of Ukraine. The goals are to:

  • Investigate factors associated with post-traumatic stress and growth.  We will collect self-report data from young people and a parent regarding individual characteristics (e.g., hope, optimism, nationalism), family characteristics (e.g., parent-child communication), and community characteristics (e.g., number of missile siren warnings and the presence of Russian troops) and their associations with stress, anxiety, depression, health, and well-being.
  • Re-interview past adolescent and young adult participants to examine longitudinal predictors of adjustment changes over time.
  • Explore the feasibility of measuring cortisol levels as a marker of stress by collecting hair samples from adolescent and young adult participants.