This study examined a non-school program aimed at enhancing the educational performance of economically disadvantaged early adolescents who live in public housing. The educational enhancement program included discussions with adults, writing activities, leisure reading, homework, helping others, and games using cognitive skills. A three-arm research design juxtaposed program youth who received educational enhancements with comparison youth in affiliated facilities who did not receive the program and with control youth in other community programs without educational enhancements. From youths, follow-up data collected 2 1/2 years after baseline revealed uniformly positive outcomes for program youth on measures of reading, verbal skills, writing, and tutoring. Teacher reports at final follow-up favored program and comparison youth over controls on measures of reading, writing, games, overall school performance, and interest in class material. School grades were higher for program youth than for comparison and control youth for reading, spelling, history, science, and social studies. Overall grade averages were higher for program youth versus comparisons and controls, as was school attendance. Study data lend empirical support to the provision of educational enhancements in non-school settings for at-risk youths.
Prevention Science – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 8, 2004
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