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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(2), 188; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15020188

Parental Attitudes, Behaviors, and Barriers to School Readiness among Parents of Low-Income Latino Children

1
Department of Pediatrics, Stanford School of Medicine, Palo Alto, CA 94305, USA
2
Fair Oaks Health Center, San Mateo Medical Center—San Mateo County Health System, San Mateo, CA 94063, USA
Current affiliation: Palo Alto Medical Foundation, San Carlos, CA 94070, USA.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 December 2017 / Revised: 14 January 2018 / Accepted: 20 January 2018 / Published: 24 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Health Needs of Vulnerable Children: Challenges and Solutions)
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Abstract

We sought to explore parental attitudes, behaviors, and barriers regarding school readiness in a county clinic serving low income, Latino children. Between December 2013–September 2014, we conducted a cross sectional survey of parents during 3–6 years well-child appointments about school readiness (SR) across: (1) attitudes/behaviors; (2) barriers; and (3) awareness; and (4) use of local resources. Most parents (n = 210, response rate 95.6%) find it very important/important for their child to know specific skills prior to school: take turns and share (98.5%), use a pencil and count (97.6%), know letters (99.1%), colors (97.1%), and shapes (96.1%). Over 80% of parents find education important and engage in positive SR behaviors: singing, practicing letters, or reading. Major barriers to SR were lack of knowledge for kindergarten readiness, language barriers, access to books at home, constraints on nightly reading, difficulty completing school forms, and limited free time with child. Awareness of local resources such as preschool programs was higher than actual utilization. These low-income, Latino parents value SR but lack knowledge to prepare their child for school and underutilize community resources such as free preschool programs. Pediatricians are uniquely positioned to address these needs, but more evidence-based interventions are needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: school readiness; pediatrics; low-income children; parents school readiness; pediatrics; low-income children; parents
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Peterson, J.; Bruce, J.; Patel, N.; Chamberlain, L.J. Parental Attitudes, Behaviors, and Barriers to School Readiness among Parents of Low-Income Latino Children. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 188.

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