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Family Developmental Risk Factors among Children with Disabilities and Children of Parents with Disabilities
Unformatted Document Text:  longitudinal study which annually collects data on an age cohort of children who were ages 12 to 16 as of December 31, 1996. We utilize Wave I (1997) data in which a parent provided information about the disability status of their child and which had the most complete battery of measures of family ecology. The overall sample used in these analyses includes youth ages 12-14 with at least one report by a parent figure. Sample size ranges from 3082 respondents to 5099 respondents, with more intensive scales asked only of a subsample of 12-14 year olds and other measures asked to all respondents within this age range. The family structures of American children are far too complex to simply examine the relationship of children and their biological parents with whom they lives. Information was collected from children on their relationship with coresidential fathers and mothers (including biological parents in the home, step-parents and adoptive parents), and their relationship with non-coresidential biological mothers and fathers. Cases in which the youth respondent reported contact with both residential a residential parent and a non-residential biological parent of the same sex, the outcome measures for the parent-youth relationship scale and the parent monitoring scale were averaged. A greater number of children were able to report maternal characteristics than paternal characteristics, indicating that many of the youth resided in single-parent, mother-only households. This large variation in household structure is reflected in a parent status measure, which accounts for the presence or non-presence of biological, step, or adoptive parents. Cases in which there is no information on the father or mother figure are excluded from the analysis of that parent’s influence. MEASURES Disability The measure of child disability status is constructed from four areas in which parents reported youth functional limitations, including learning or emotional disabilities, sensory limitations, physical disabilities, or chronic illness (see Table 1 for complete variable definitions). The relatively few number of children with limitations precludes analyses for each dimension of disability. Therefore, we have abstracted across these variables to determine if a child has one or more severe functional limitations (“currently limited a lot”) and no severe limitation but one or more mild limitations (“currently limited a little”). Remaining children are classified as having one or more past limitations (“not currently limited”) or no limitations. As information from outcome variables used in these analyses are provided by interviewed children, this study precludes those children whose disabilities prevent them from participating in such an interview. The validity of the disability measure was then examined against other indicators associated with special health care needs, including overall health reports, school attendance records, and histories of remedial learning. The constructed measure of youth disability was strongly linked to these related health variables.

Authors: Hogan, Dennis. and Alexandrowicz, Carrie.
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longitudinal study which annually collects data on an age cohort of children who were
ages 12 to 16 as of December 31, 1996. We utilize Wave I (1997) data in which a parent
provided information about the disability status of their child and which had the most
complete battery of measures of family ecology. The overall sample used in these
analyses includes youth ages 12-14 with at least one report by a parent figure. Sample
size ranges from 3082 respondents to 5099 respondents, with more intensive scales asked
only of a subsample of 12-14 year olds and other measures asked to all respondents
within this age range.

The family structures of American children are far too complex to simply
examine the relationship of children and their biological parents with whom they lives.
Information was collected from children on their relationship with coresidential fathers
and mothers (including biological parents in the home, step-parents and adoptive
parents), and their relationship with non-coresidential biological mothers and fathers.
Cases in which the youth respondent reported contact with both residential a residential
parent and a non-residential biological parent of the same sex, the outcome measures for
the parent-youth relationship scale and the parent monitoring scale were averaged. A
greater number of children were able to report maternal characteristics than paternal
characteristics, indicating that many of the youth resided in single-parent, mother-only
households. This large variation in household structure is reflected in a parent status
measure, which accounts for the presence or non-presence of biological, step, or adoptive
parents. Cases in which there is no information on the father or mother figure are
excluded from the analysis of that parent’s influence.

MEASURES

Disability
The measure of child disability status is constructed from four areas in which
parents reported youth functional limitations, including learning or emotional disabilities,
sensory limitations, physical disabilities, or chronic illness (see Table 1 for complete
variable definitions). The relatively few number of children with limitations precludes
analyses for each dimension of disability. Therefore, we have abstracted across these
variables to determine if a child has one or more severe functional limitations (“currently
limited a lot”) and no severe limitation but one or more mild limitations (“currently
limited a little”). Remaining children are classified as having one or more past
limitations (“not currently limited”) or no limitations. As information from outcome
variables used in these analyses are provided by interviewed children, this study
precludes those children whose disabilities prevent them from participating in such an
interview. The validity of the disability measure was then examined against other
indicators associated with special health care needs, including overall health reports,
school attendance records, and histories of remedial learning. The constructed measure of
youth disability was strongly linked to these related health variables.


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