December 20, 2002

In this Issue:

  1. New on IDEA Practices: Litigation Log
      Source: IDEAnews - December 2002
  2. Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD)
      Source: What's New in OSEP - December 2002
  3. The What Works Clearinghouse is Seeking Input From the Education Community.
      Source: What Works Clearinghouse, Institute of Education Sciences - December 2002
  4. New Birth Report Shows More Moms Get Prenatal Care
      Source: HHS RELEASE - December 20, 2002
  5. Authors Examine Well-Being Of Children In Immigrant Families
      Source: MCH Alert - December 20, 2002
  6. Report Examines State-Specific Trends in U.S. Live Births to Women Born Outside the 50 States and DC
      Source: MCH Alert - December 20, 2002

1. New on IDEA Practices: Litigation Log

Source: IDEAnews - December 2002

The IDEA Practices Litigation Log is a collection of legal cases meant to help service providers and administrators make educational decisions. It now has over 120 cases that outline some of the most influential case law in the history of special education. It is available at http://www.cec.sped.org/law_res/doc/law/aboutLitLog.php. [Note: Link checked on 5/11/2007 - this resource is no longer available online].

2. Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD)

Source: What's New in OSEP - December 2002

The Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD) serves organizations and programs that work with families of children and youth with disabilities. This OSEP-funded Center, housed at the Academy for Educational Development, offers a range of information and services on the subject of assistive technology: http://www.fctd.info/

3. The What Works Clearinghouse is Seeking Input From the Education Community.

Source: What Works Clearinghouse, Institute of Education Sciences - December 2002

The What Works Clearinghouse (WWC), a project of the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences, was established to provide educators, policymakers, and the public with a central, independent, and trusted source of scientific evidence of what works in education. It is administered by the Department through a contract to a joint venture of the American Institutes for Research and the Campbell Collaboration. The WWC is currently developing an agenda for the education topic areas, interventions, and general approaches it will review in the coming year as well as looking ahead for those to review in the future.... The selection of topic areas, interventions and approaches for study by the WWC will be based on educational significance, using criteria such as (1) importance for improving student outcomes, (2) perceived demand within the educational community for evidence about effective educational practices in the area, (3) availability within the topic area of high-quality scientific studies of effectiveness, and (4) potential of work on the topic to improve the scientific basis for making important educational decisions by practitioners and policymakers.

What education areas should the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) review? Please go to the WWC Topics Page to offer your suggestions: http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc/openinvitation/default.asp

4. New Birth Report Shows More Moms Get Prenatal Care

Source: HHS RELEASE - December 20, 2002

A new HHS report released today shows a significant increase in the number of women receiving prenatal care -- especially among Hispanic and black women.  The report shows that 83 percent of women received timely (in the first trimester) prenatal care in 2001, up from 76 percent in 1990.   In addition, only 1 percent of women did not receive any prenatal care in 2001.  During this time period, timely prenatal care increased among all race and ethnic groups, but was particularly evident among Hispanic and black women...

The report, based on birth certificates filed in state vital statistics offices and reported to CDC, tracks many other important indicators of maternal and infant health and contains other positive findings....  The report also found that the percentage of infants born prematurely (at less than 37 completed weeks of gestation) rose to nearly 12 percent (11.9), its highest level in at least two decades.  The rate of low birth weight climbed to 7.7 percent in 2001, up 13 percent from the mid-1980s.  Some of the increase in low birth weight and preterm birth can be attributed to the rise in multiple births experienced over the past decade.  Changes in obstetrical practice, such as greater reliance on induced labor and other efforts to safely manage delivery, may also be playing a role.

The report, "Births: Final Data for 2001," can be found on CDC's National Center for Health Statistics web site at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs.

5. Authors Examine Well-Being Of Children In Immigrant Families

Source: MCH Alert - December 20, 2002

The Health and Well-Being of Children in Immigrant Families, a brief by the Urban Institute, presents a comparison of children in immigrant families with those in native-born families, focusing on a number of key indicators of child well-being. Findings were based on the 1999 National Survey of America's Families, which includes data on 11 million children of immigrants. The brief includes information on family income and environment, child physical and emotional health, and access to needed benefits and services. The brief is intended for use by policymakers, health professionals, and child advocates in designing social welfare policy that meets the needs of children of immigrants, whose numbers are increasing. The brief is available at http://www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/310584_B52.pdf.

[Originally published in MCHAlert 2002 National Center for Education in Maternal and Child Health and Georgetown University. Reprinted with permission.]

6. Report Examines State-Specific Trends in U.S. Live Births to Women Born Outside the 50 States and DC

Source: MCH Alert - December 20, 2002

"Women born outside the 50 states and DC had better birth outcomes than their state-born racial/ethnic counterparts," state the authors of a report published in the December 12, 2002, issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. This report presents state-specific comparisons of live births in 1990 and 2000 to women born outside the 50 states and DC and compares maternal characteristics and live-birth outcomes for these women with those for state-born mothers.

Data were drawn from the National Center for Health Statistics' natality files for 1990 and 2000, which included a record of the mother's place of birth. Maternal characteristics and reported birth outcomes (preterm births and low birthweight) were analyzed by race/ethnicity.

The authors found that

During 1990-2000, the percentage of all live births in the United States to women born outside the 50 states and DC increased from 15.6% to 21.4%.
While six states (California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, and Texas) accounted for 75.5% of live births to women born outside the 50 states and DC in 1990, the percentage increased by 10% or more in six states (Arizona, Colorado Georgia, Nevada, North Carolina, and Oregon) between 1990 and 2000; births to Hispanics accounted for the majority of the increase.
Women born outside the 50 states and DC were more than twice as likely as their state-born racial/ethnic counterparts to have less than a high school education and were less likely to have completed 12 years of education.
State-born women were more likely than those born outside the 50 states and DC to be adolescents when they gave birth; however, the magnitude of this difference varied by race/ethnicity.
State-born women across all racial/ethnic groups were more likely to be unmarried than their counterparts born outside the 50 states and DC.
Except for Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Filipinas, and other Asian Pacific Islanders, women born outside the 50 states and DC were more likely than their state-born counterparts to begin prenatal care late or to have no prenatal care.
Overall, state-born women were more likely to give birth to a preterm infant or a low-birthweight infant than were those born outside the 50 states and DC.

The authors conclude that these findings may reflect economic, cultural, and language barriers, highlighting the need for U.S. maternal and child health services to understand and adapt to the needs of an increasingly diverse population.

Sappenfield B, Iyasu S, Martin JA, et al. 2002. State-specific trends in U.S. live births to women born outside the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 51(48):1091-1095. Available at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5148a3.htm.

[Originally published in MCHAlert ©  2002 National Center for Education in Maternal and Child Health and Georgetown University.  Reprinted with permission.]