Examining the Family Context and Relations with Attitudes to School and Scholastic Competence

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Abstract:

The importance of family relations in children's adjustment has been established, but questions remain about the contexts that account for these associations. Examining children's reactions to family stress holds promise for advancing our understanding of the relations between attachment and school-related outcomes. The present study examined children's attachment, basal cortisol, and emotional reactions in 235 community families, to understand contributions to children's attitudes to school and scholastic competence. Children's attachment security and normative basal cortisol both contributed to positive school outcomes, while insecurity in the context of low or high cortisol and emotional distress related negatively. Findings highlight the importance of examining stress in family contexts to advance the understanding of children's school functioning, with implications for school mental health interventions.

Keywords: ATTACHMENT; CHILD ADJUSTMENT; CORTISOL; EMOTION; FAMILY RELATIONS; STRESS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2010

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  • Published by The Clifford Beers Foundation, in collaboration with the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Advances in School Mental Health Promotion emphasises the interconnectedness of research, policy, training and practice and the opportunities to make progress in all these areas through global dialogue, collaboration and action. Mark Weist (University of South Carolina and former director/senior advisor of the Center for School Mental Health) and Michael Murray (The Clifford Beers Foundation) are the editors, supported by a distinguished international editorial board.

    Advances in School Mental Health Promotion is an academic journal that co-ordinates the dissemination of new research outcomes to all those involved in policy making and the implementation of mental health promotion in schools and is essential reading for those with a personal or professional interest in this work.

    Peer reviewed by an expert international board, the Journal is a comprehensive information resource which publishes material of distinction submitted by those with a clinical, professional, academic or personal interest in promoting mental health in schools

    The aim of the Journal is to increase awareness, foster understanding and promote collaboration between the different disciplines engaged in this diverse activity of study.

    Advances in School Mental Health Promotion is the official journal of the International Alliance for Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Schools (InterCAMHS), an alliance that aims to promote the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people.

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