Although smoking prevention is a high priority, few studies have examined alterable family and school context factors in childhood that influence later smoking behaviors. The present study examined associations of parent involvement in and expectations for children's education, elementary school quality, and school mobility with lifetime smoking history in adulthood for a low-income, minority cohort. Participants from the Chicago Longitudinal Study (N = 1142) were interviewed at age 22–24 as part of a 20-year follow-up of a prospective early childhood cohort of economically disadvantaged families. The sample is 74% of the original cohort (N = 1539). Family surveys and school records measured parent involvement and expectations as well as school quality and mobility from 4th to 8th grades. At age 22–24 follow-up, 47% reported a smoking history, and 37% were current smokers. After controlling for family background and participant characteristics, parent involvement in school was associated with reduced odds of a smoking history (OR = 0.88; 95% CI = 0.78, 0.99). Magnet school attendance (a school quality indicator) was associated with lower odds of current (OR = 0.47; 95% CI = 0.28, 0.79) and daily smoking (OR = 0.40, 95% CI = 0.21, 0.74). More frequent school moves were consistently associated with increased odds of smoking (e.g., OR [currently] = 1.17; 95% CI = 1.07, 1.36). Results indicate that protective factors within the family and school context were consistently associated with smoking measures. Programs and practices that strengthen parent involvement and school support may contribute to prevention efforts.
PubMed: MeSH publication types
- Journal Article
- Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
- Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.