Journal article

Predictors and consequences of school mobility in middle childhood


Published in:

Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 76

By: Deborah Lowe Vandell, Megan Kuhfeld, Elizabeth Gershoff, Robert Crosnoe


In this prospective longitudinal study (N = 1094, M age = 5.6 years to M age = 11.1 years), the authors examined family factors associated with school mobility and then asked if either a move during the previous year or cumulative moves across elementary school were related to child functioning. Family factors were not linked to a recent move or a single move, but changes in family income and household structure did predict higher odds of two or more moves in elementary school. There was no evidence that a recent move or a single move was related to children’s academic or social functioning. Effects of two or more moves on child functioning were not significant after controlling for the number of analyses that were conducted. Taken together, school mobility during elementary school did not appear to be a pervasive risk although the authors were unable to study very high rates of school mobility because of very small sample sizes.

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