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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 220133 Find in a Library
Title: From Risk to At-Risk
Journal: Child and Youth Services  Volume:29  Issue:1/2  Dated:2007  Pages:29-56
Author(s): Niall McElwee
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 28
Type: Literature Review
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This literature review explores how and why a child or youth might be considered at risk exploring educational environments, the world of insurance, the natural world, medical discourse, and the world of the individual.
Abstract: The review illustrates that there is, in fact, no consensus regarding the risk construct itself, as it is approached from so many differing perspectives and disciplines such as the social and behavioral sciences, and the physical sciences. The concept of risk includes both an objective component (a perceived probability) and a subjective component (a perceived danger). Risk factors may exist before a problem or disorder; may be time-limited or continue over time; may derive from the individual, the family, the community, or the more general environment; and may play a causal role. Risk is not certain. It is inaccurate to automatically assume a direct cause and effect relationship between a risk factor and a specific outcome. It is also known that risks interact, multiplying the potential effects. Researchers generally agree that students are placed at-risk when they experience a significant mismatch between their individual and structural circumstances and needs and what resources are available. The capacity or willingness of the school to accept, accommodate, and respond to them in a manner that supports and enables their maximum social, emotional, and intellectual growth and development, while paying attention to their cultural and familial backgrounds, plays a key role in deciding whether or not the children will become resilient in the face of risk. Many researchers tended, when writing about risk and children and youth, to focus on single variables such as intense interparental conflict that exacerbates maladjustment in children. This has changed since the introduction of population health child and youth care perspectives. There is now more interest in co-occurring adversities and the total, or whole, environment of a child. Notes, references
Main Term(s): Children at risk
Index Term(s): Adolescents at risk; Criminology; Cultural influences; Dangerousness; Developmental criminology; Environmental influences; Home environment; Ireland; Sociology
Note: Special issue on At-Risk Children and Youth: Resiliency Explored, for related articles see NCJ-220132 and NCJ-220134-141.
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