ERIC Number: ED506018
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
Youth Who are "Disconnected" and Those Who Then Reconnect: Assessing the Influence of Family, Programs, Peers and Communities. Research Brief. Publication #2009-37
Hair, Elizabeth C.; Moore, Kristin A.; Ling, Thomson J.; McPhee-Baker, Cameron; Brown, Brett V.
The transition to adulthood can be a turbulent time. To succeed in this transition, adolescents and emerging adults must advance in several areas of development, such as education, work, financial autonomy, romantic relationships, peer involvement, citizenship, and avoidance of destructive health behaviors. However, some young people who have difficulty with this transition may disconnect from work or school for a lengthy period of time. The term "disconnected youth" is often used to describe these young people. This Research Brief presents the results of new Child Trends' analyses on factors that have a bearing on whether youth become disconnected, updating previous research on the subject, as well as factors relating to youth reconnecting after a period of disconnection. To conduct these analyses, Child Trends drew on data from a nationally representative survey of youth which followed a sample of young people for four years. Overall, we found that a variety of factors affect the likelihood of an adolescent's disconnection and reconnection, including demographics, family processes, youth characteristics and behaviors, peer characteristics, and community characteristics. Most notably, we found that participation in a job search, job training or school-to-work program is related to a lower risk of becoming disconnected. Our work reinforces the idea that involvement in programs and support from caring adults can lower the risk of disconnection among disadvantaged young people, a finding that should inform the work of policy makers and program providers to address the needs of this vulnerable population. (Contains 3 figures.)
Descriptors: Adolescents, Young Adults, Alienation, At Risk Persons, Social Influences, Family Environment, Community Characteristics, Juvenile Justice, Participation, Socioeconomic Status, Health Behavior, Job Training, Social Networks
Child Trends. 4301 Connecticut Avenue NW Suite 350, Washington, DC 20008. Tel: 202-572-6000; Fax: 202-362-8420; Web site: http://www.childtrends.org
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: Child Trends