Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
Contact: Robert Bock or Marianne Glass Miller301-496-5133 email@example.com
May 14, 2010
In 1991, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) launched the Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (SECCYD) at sites affiliated with 10 research universities across the country. The study followed more than 1,000 children from the time they were 1 month old, investigating the short- and long-term relationships between child care and children’s development. It is the most comprehensive study to date of children and the many environments in which they develop.
Researchers examined how differences among families, children and child care arrangements are linked to the intellectual, social and emotional development and health of children. The study was not designed to determine cause and effect and so could not demonstrate conclusively whether or not a given aspect of the child care experience caused a particular effect. During the study, researchers examined children’s experiences in child care, their home life, school achievement and behavior using many different measurements and tests. Researchers also collected information about the children’s gender and race, their mothers’ education, her mental health and the family’s makeup and economic status. Although the study sample was not representative of the nation as a whole, the participant families come from diverse geographic, demographic, economic and ethnic backgrounds.