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Children's Emotional and Behavioural Problems and Carer-Child Relationships in Permanent Care

  • Maria M. Alexandris (a1), Sabine W. Hammond (a1) and Michael McKay (a1)

Abstract

Children placed in permanent care often display a range of challenging behaviours that can affect the quality of carer-child relationships. The current study examined the relationship between children's emotional and behavioural difficulties and the quality of carer-child relationships in permanent care (N = 46). Permanent carers of children ages 3 to 12 completed the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ; Goodman, 1999) and Child-Parent Relationship Scale (CPRS; Pianta, 1992). Results indicated that child emotional and behavioural difficulties were related to carer-child relationships. The SDQ scales Conduct Problems and Pro-Social Behaviour were the strongest predictors of relationship quality. The findings of the study suggest that fewer conduct problems and more pro-social behaviour is important for positive carer-child relationships.

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