1994-1998

Project Directors:Nancy L. Marshall, Ed.D., Kathleen L. McCartney, Ph.D., Cynthia García Coll, Ph.D., Fern Marx, M.H.S.M., and Nancy Keefe

workfamilieschildren_small20This study was created to better understand how children spend their after-school time, and how it may be best used to improve growth and learning. The study was stratified by ethnicity and took into account gender and social class.

workfamilieschildren_small20How do elementary school children spend their time after school? What kinds of after-school experiences help elementary school children to learn and grow and feel good about themselves? The Boston After-School Experiences Study (BASES) was funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development to study the after-school experiences of boys and girls from different backgrounds, and to learn more about the impact of these experiences on the development of children. The model that guides BASES considers child development within the context of the social ecology of the after-school experience, the family, and the community.

Study description

BASES was a three-wave longitudinal study of 206 elementary school children living in Boston, Mass. Interviews and observations were conducted between 1994 and 1998. The sample was stratified by race/ethnicity, including 75 African Americans, 64 Hispanic Americans, and 67 European Americans (non-Hispanic Whites), with 100 boys and 106 girls. In the first wave, there were 48 first graders, 57 second graders, 58 third graders, and 43 fourth graders. More information about the sample can be found in: Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., Marx, F., McCartney, K., Keefe, N., & Ruh, J. (1997). After-School Time and Children’s Behavioral Adjustment. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 43 (3), 497-514. While the data collection phase of the study has ended, we continue to publish papers and welcome other researchers interested in collaborating on secondary analyses of this data set.

What did we learn?

BASES was designed to provide more information about children’s after-school experiences, and to address questions about the links between communities, families, and children’s lives, in the context of an understanding of race/ethnicity, gender, and social class.

How do children spend their time after school? We asked the mother or guardian to report on where the child spent his/her time after school during the previous week, and how many hours s/he spent in each situation. Table 1 summarizes the results for the first year of the study.

Table 1

After-school Time in Week Prior to Interview

Setting

Number of children with any after-school time in this setting

Mean proportion of after-school time in this setting

Mean hours last week in this setting

Range of hours

Parental care

170

83%

11.42

0.5-22.5

Lessons/sports

61

30%

2.63

0.5-10.0

Other adult care

58

28%

7.17

0.5-18.3

Program

59

29%

10.58

1.5-20.0

Older sibling care

33

16%

4.05

0.5-17.5

Self care

19

9%

1.14

0.08-4.0

All settings combined

206

100%

16.01

9.5-22.5

Note: Older sibling care” means child was in the care of an older sibling, without an adult present. These siblings ranged in age from 8 years to 17 years; the average age of older siblings was 13.42 years. “Self care” means there were no adults, and no older children, present. However, there may or may not have been younger children present.

Source: Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., Marx, F., McCartney, K., Keefe, N., & Ruh, J. (1997). After-School Time and Children’s Behavioral Adjustment. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 43 (3), 497-514.

More about BASES

For more of the studies findings, please refer to BASES publications, papers, and presentations:

Bub, K., McCartney, K., & Marshall, N. (April 2003). Predictors of Entry into Unsupervised Care Using Discrete-time Hazard Models. Presented as part of the symposium, After-School Care During Middle Childhood: Self Care, Structured Activities, and Formal Programs, at the 2003 meetings of the Society for Research on Child Development. Tampa, FL.


Nancy L. Marshall, Fern Marx, Kathleen McCartney, Nancy Keefe, and Anne E. Noonan. (2001). It Takes an Urban Village: Parenting Networks of Urban Families. Journal of Family Issues, 22 (3), 163-182.


Nancy L. Marshall, Ann Marie White, Nancy E. Keefe, & Fern Marx. (April, 1999). When are children in self- or sibling care? Predicting entry into unsupervised care. Presented at the 1999 Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Albuquerque, NM.


Marshall, N. L., Wolf, A., McCartney, K., Garcia Coll, C., Marx, F., & Keefe, N. (August, 1998). Inequality and Children’s Social Competence. Paper presented at the 1998 annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, San Francisco, CA.


Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., Marx, F., McCartney, K., Keefe, N., & Ruh, J. (1997). After-School Time and Children’s Behavioral Adjustment. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 43 (3), 497-514.


Keefe, N. & Miller, B. (April 1997). The New Research on School-Age Care: What It Means for You. Workshop presented at the 1997 meetings of the National School Age Care Association, Orlando, FL.


McCartney, K., Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., & Marx, F. (April, 1997). Children's Time After School and Relations with Peers and Parents. Paper presented at the 1997 meetings of the Society for Research on Child Development.


Marshall, N. L., Marx, F., Garcia Coll, C., & McCartney, K. (August, 1996). It Takes a Village to Raise a Child: Parenting Networks of Urban Families. Paper presented at the 1996 meetings of the American Sociological Association, New York, NY.


Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., Marx, F., & McCartney, K. (September, 1996). Sociocultural Influences on Women’s Depression. Paper presented at the 1996 meetings of the APA Women’s Health Conference.


Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., Marx, F., & McCartney, K. (March, 1996). Family Values: Culture Social Class and Parenting Beliefs and Behaviors. Paper presented at the 1996 meetings of the Eastern Sociological Society, Washington, D.C.


Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., McCartney, K., & Marx, F. (March, 1996). Culture, Social Class, Poverty and Parenting Beliefs and Behaviors. Paper presented at the 1996 meetings of the Eastern Sociological Society, Washington, D.C.


Marshall, N. L., Garcia Coll, C., McCartney, K., & Marx, F. (August, 1995). Culture, Communities and Families: The Context for Children's Time After School. Paper presented at the 1995 meetings of the American Sociological Association, Washington, D.C.