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Preventing obesity in infants and toddlers in child care: Results from a pilot randomized controlled trial
Neelon, Sara E. Benjamin, July, 2014
Maternal and Child Health Journal, 18(5), 1246-1257

Few interventions have focused on very young children for obesity prevention. This study evaluated a pilot intervention to improve the nutrition and physical activity environments of child care centers serving infants and toddlers. This randomized controlled trial took place in 32 centers in Boston, Massachusetts. The intervention aimed to improve policies and practices related to nutrition and physical activity within the center. For the outcome, observers assessed center environments using the Environment and Policy Assessment and Observation (EPAO) instrument (range 0-320 points) at baseline and the 6-month follow-up. We fit linear regression models with change in EPAO score from baseline to follow-up, controlling for potential confounders for total score, nutrition sub-score, and physical activity sub-score. Intervention centers had a mean (SD) of 98.2 (144.8) children enrolled, while control centers had 59.2 (34.5). In intervention centers, 47.5 % of children were white, compared to 46.2 % in controls. Fewer intervention centers had outdoor play areas on site (75 vs. 100 %) but more had indoor play space (67 vs. 25 %). At baseline, intervention centers had a mean (SD) EPAO score of 134.5 (7.0) points and controls had 146.8 (4.8) points. Compared with controls, intervention centers improved their EPAO scores at follow-up by 18.5 points (95 % CI 0.1, 37.0; p = 0.049), chiefly through greater improvement in physical activity (12.2; 95 % CI -1.6, 26.0; p = 0.075) and not nutrition (6.4; 95 % CI -7.1, 19.8; p = 0.385). The pilot showed promise as an intervention to improve center environments, but future studies should include child-level outcomes. (author abstract)

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Child care in America: 2014 state fact sheets
Child Care Aware of America, March, 2014
Arlington, VA: Child Care Aware of America.

This state-by-state compilation of statistics presents state-level averages of the number of families, children under 6, working mothers, child care sites, demand for types of care, child care prices, subsidy use, and workforce data for each state. The section for each state provides a side-by-side comparison of the statewide and national averages. The data was compiled through a survey of state child care resource and referral networks and sources of secondary data

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21st Century Community Learning Centers program: Fiscal year 2012 year end report
Massachusetts. Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, May, 2013
Malden: Massachusetts, Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

The following report provides information on the fiscal year 2011-2012 (FY12) 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) grant program. In particular, it examines program information related to participation, activities, and hours of service. Additionally, it details the results of the Survey of Academic Youth Outcomes (SAYO) evaluation tool, which was developed by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department) and the National Institute of Out-of-School Time (NIOST) to track information on the effect participation in the 21st CCLC programs has in increasing student achievement, as well as to provide feedback for ongoing program improvement. (author abstract)

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education 21st Century Community Learning Centers: Summer learning programs: Program evaluation report -- Summer 2012
National Institute on Out-of-School Time (U.S.), March, 2013
Malden: Massachusetts, Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

This report highlights evaluation findings for four 2012 summer learning programs in the state of Massachusetts. Child-level assessment, program observations, interviews with site directors, teachers, and parents provided data for evaluation. A summary of research findings reported improvements across all domains, particularly in the test categories of both Mathematics and Communications and Relations with Adults. Recommendations include: continue to strengthen the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) content curriculum; balance youth existing knowledge with new skill building; provide more leadership and choice opportunities for youth; maintain transparent and open communication; and maximize the unique contexts offered by each of the program sites.

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Research Connections is supported by grant #90YE0104 from the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents are solely the responsibility of the National Center for Children in Poverty and the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, the Administration for Children and Families, or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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