Child Maltreatment and Academic Performance

Brian A. Jacob and Joseph Ryan
Key Findings:
  1. Approximately 18% of Michigan third graders have been formally investigated by Child Protective Services (CPS) for possible exposure to maltreatment.
  2. Across Michigan, some student groups are more likely to be investigated by CPS for suspected child maltreatment.
  3. Early childhood maltreatment is associated with signifcantly lower academic outcomes, even after we control for school, neighborhood, race, and other key demographics.
  4. Referral rates vary dramatically across districts, and even across schools within the same district. It is not unusual for one-third of students in high-poverty schools to have been investigated for abuse or neglect.
  5. While poorer school districts have higher rates of maltreatment investigations, there are important exceptions to this pattern.
On average, approximately 18% of third grade students have been subject to at least one formal investigation for child maltreatment.” Page 2