Promoting resilience: A preschool intervention enhances the adolescent adjustment of children exposed to early adversity

Michael T. Sanders, Janet A. Welsh, Karen L. Bierman, Brenda S. Heinrichs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Two hundred ninety-four children from low-income families (58% White, 17% Latinx, 25% Black; 54% girls; Mage = 4.49 years old at study entry) were recruited from Head Start classrooms to participate in a randomized-controlled trial of the project Research-based, Developmentally Informed (REDI) preschool intervention and then followed longitudinally for 10 years through 9th grade. At study entry, parents reported on their children's exposure to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). Youth reported on their feelings of social-emotional distress and school bonding after making the transition into middle school (7th grade) and high school (9th grade). Multilevel latent profile analyses revealed three profiles of adolescent distress and school bonding. Increased rates of ACEs in early childhood predicted membership in adolescent profiles characterized by heightened social-emotional distress and reduced levels of school bonding. The REDI intervention that focused on promoting early social-emotional and language skills in preschool moderated the impact of early ACEs on adolescent adjustment and promoted youth resilience, significantly buffering children from the negative impact of early ACEs on their levels of social-emotional distress and school bonding.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-298
Number of pages14
JournalSchool Psychology
Volume35
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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