Study analyzes report card release dates, calls to child abuse hotline

Bottom Line: This study used a complex method to analyze report card release dates and cases of child physical abuse called into a hotline and verified by Florida’s child welfare agency for elementary school children during an academic year. In an analysis that included 1,943 cases of verified child physical abuse, calls that resulted in verified cases came in at a higher rate on Saturdays when report cards were released on Fridays. Possible reasons to explain why are speculative and require further study. The study is limited by its focus only on public school data and data only on physical abuse that resulted in calls to a state hotline.

Authors: Melissa A. Bright, Ph.D., of the University of Florida, Gainesville, and coauthors

Related Material: The editorial, “Corporal Punishment and Children’s Report Cards – Failing Our Children,” by Antoinette L. Laskey, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., of the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, also is available on the For The Media website.

To Learn More: The full study is available on the For The Media website.

(doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2018.4346)

Editor’s Note: The article contains funding/support disclosures. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

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Melissa A. Bright, Ph.D.

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