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Risk and Resilience Among Children With Incarcerated Parents: Examining Heterogeneity in Delinquency and School Outcomes

NCJ Number
Journal of Child and Family Studies Volume: 29 Issue: 11 Dated: 2020 Pages: 3239-3252
Kristen P. Kremer; Cyanea Y.S. Poon; Cherrelle L. Jones; Matthew A. Hagler; Janis B. Kupersmidt; Rebecca L. Stelter; Kathryn N. Stump; Jean E. Rhodes
Date Published
14 pages
This study used latent profile analysis of 1,088 children with incarcerated parents to identify heterogeneity in their behavioral and social problems.
Four profiles were identified. The majority (61 percent) were well-adjusted with low behavioral problems at school and less affiliation with antisocial friends. Youth classified as overactive (20 percent) displayed frequent disruptive and hyperactive behaviors, and isolated youth (14 percent) exhibited high loneliness and depression and were most likely to be bullied. Youth in the aggressive profile (7 percent) exhibited frequent aggression, school behavioral problems, and affiliation with antisocial friends. Although the aggressive profile represented the smallest proportion of the sample, their level of delinquent behavior and number of negative school outcomes were the most concerning. Examination of risk and protective factors by profile found overactive and isolated youth to be more likely to have two or more adults in the household compared to well-adjusted and aggressive youth. Meanwhile, well-adjusted youth had significantly higher school connectedness, parent support, and positive teacher relationships. Aggressive youth were least likely to be raised by a married caregiver. Universal behavioral assessments of children with incarcerated parents would be useful in identifying youth at risk for escalating or persistent delinquency or hyperactivity. 80 references (publisher abstract modified)