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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2007

Prathiba Chitsabesan, Sue Bailey, Richard Williams, Leo Kroll, Cassandra Kenning and Louise Talbot

This article is based on a study that was commissioned by the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales. We report on the learning profiles and education needs of a cohort…

Abstract

This article is based on a study that was commissioned by the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales. We report on the learning profiles and education needs of a cohort of young offenders who were recruited for the study. The research was a national cross‐sectional survey of 301 young offenders who were resident in custodial settings or attending youth offending teams in the community. The young people were assessed using the WASI and the WORD measures to obtain psychometric information (IQ scores and reading/reading comprehension ages). One in five (20%) young people met the ICD‐10 criteria for mental retardation (IQ<70), while problems with reading (52%) and reading comprehension (61%) were common. Verbal IQ scores were found to be significantly lower than performance IQ scores, particularly in male offenders. It is clear from these results that a large proportion of juvenile offenders have a learning disability, as characterised by an IQ<70 and significantly low reading and reading comprehension ages. The underlying aetiology of this association is less clear and may be a consequence of both an increased prevalence of neurocognitive deficits and the impact of poor schooling. There is some evidence that developmental pathways may be different for boys compared with girls.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 2 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2008

Nick Axford, Emma Crewe, Celene Domitrovich and Alina Morawska

This article reviews the contents of the previous year's editions of the Journal of Children's Services (Volume 2, 2007), as requested by the Journal's editorial board. It…

Abstract

This article reviews the contents of the previous year's editions of the Journal of Children's Services (Volume 2, 2007), as requested by the Journal's editorial board. It draws out some of the main messages for how high‐quality scientific research can help build good childhoods in western developed countries, focusing on: the need for epidemiology to understand how to match services to needs; how research can build evidence of the impact of prevention and intervention services on child well‐being; what the evidence says about how to implement proven programmes successfully; the economic case for proven programmes; the urgency of improving children's material living standards; how to help the most vulnerable children in society; and, lastly, the task of measuring child well‐being.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 14 September 2012

Sian Evans

The purpose of this paper is to assess whether current routinely available population level data are adequate for assessing the health needs of vulnerable children.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess whether current routinely available population level data are adequate for assessing the health needs of vulnerable children.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper presents a review of routinely available population level data relating to 23 vulnerable child groups.

Findings

Data were available to measure how many children may be affected locally for seven groups (30 per cent) (looked after children, care leavers, absent or excluded pupils, children in poverty, young offenders, children in need and children assessed to be at risk of social services). Partial data were available for 11 (48 per cent) groups and no data were identified for five (22 per cent) groups. At least one measure of health and well being status was identified for three groups (13 per cent) (care leavers, children assessed to be in need of social services and children assessed to be at risk by social services). For seven groups (30 per cent), a measure of health status was identified for some children in the group. No measure of health status was identified for 13 groups (57 per cent).

Research limitations/implications

The review only considered routinely published data that can be reported for all counties or unitary authorities in England. Although every effort was taken to ensure complete identification, it is still possible that some data sources may have been missed.

Practical implications

The gaps in available data to monitor vulnerable children's health will make the task of ensuring their needs are appropriately represented in local needs assessment and health strategies more difficult. The current service reforms offer an opportunity to address the data gaps.

Originality/value

Data relating to some vulnerable child groups was reviewed in 2006 when a number of recommendations were made. This paper updates and broadens that review and reports on progress made against the 2006 recommendations. The findings of the paper have implications for policy makers and commissioners of children's services.

Details

Journal of Public Mental Health, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5729

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