Examining the effectiveness of a culturally adapted social-emotional intervention for African American males in an urban setting

Graves S, Herndon-Sobalvarro A, Nichols K et al.

Youth Violence.
Randomised controlled trial (RCT).

Journal Information

School psychology quarterly
Online first
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The purpose of the present study was to assess the efficacy of a culturally adapted version of the Strong Start intervention program on the social-emotional outcomes of African American male students. Externalizing behavior problems of children, specifically African American males, are of great concern for schools. Punitive discipline polices such as expulsion and suspension have proved to be ineffective and harmful. Consequently, school-based social-emotional learning (SEL) interventions have been proposed to teach children coping skills that can help them increase positive social behaviors and emotional regulation. Sixty-one African American male students enrolled in an urban elementary school participated in this intervention. This study employed a randomized delayed treatment control design. Results indicated positive effects in the areas of self-regulation and self-competence. However the intervention did not have an impact on student's empathy, responsibility, or externalizing behavior. Implications are discussed in terms of developing culturally relevant school-based interventions for African American males.
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