Charles Stewart Mott Foundation Grant Supports Next Phase of Longitudinal Study of Long-Term Effects of Out-of-School Time
In 1991, the Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (SECCYD) was initiated at 10 data collection sites (Arkansas, California, Kansas, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Philadelphia PA, Pittsburgh PA, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin) to identify meaningful effects of out-of-school time on child development outcomes.
To date, the SECCYD has documented the out-of-school time experiences of more than 1000 diverse participants who were studied from birth through the end of high school. During Phases 1 and 2 of the project, detailed information was collected about early child care (its quality, hours per week, and locations). Detailed information about out-of-school time (types, intensity, duration, and quality of organized and informal activities) was then collected during elementary and early middle school (Phase 3), early high school (Phase 4), and end of high school (Phase 5). Detailed information about the participants’ experiences with their families was obtained in all five phases.
Previous research has linked sustained participation in organized activities to academic and social competencies in the elementary school years, with evidence that academic achievement gaps are narrowed when low-income children experience sustained participation in organized activities. Other research has linked sustained participation in organized activities during the middle school years and the high school years to reductions in substance use and other risk-taking behaviors during the high school years. A third set of studies has found links between participation in organized activities during elementary school and academic and social functioning during high school.
The current study will extend the SECCYD to include participants’ functioning at age 26 years to identify enduring effects of organized out-of-school activities on adult outcomes including educational attainment, earnings, occupation, family formation, physical and mental health, and civic engagement.
Concurrently, researchers at the University of California, Irvine, will be conducting a comprehensive review of the literature to locate published and unpublished studies of afterschool and summer learning programs. Findings from these studies will be the data analyzed for a research synthesis for policy makers and practitioners.
PI for both segments of research is Professor Deborah Lowe Vandell, who has been engaged in all phases of the SECCYD study since 1991.