Factors Associated With Reported Parental Knowledge of Children's School Backpack Contents in Central Texas

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Abstract of Journal Article - December 2006  

By Samuel N. Forjuoh, MD, MPH, DrPH; John A. Schuchmann, MD; and Saundra Mason, BSN, RN

Factors associated with parental knowledge of their children's backpack contents were investigated through self-reports of 427 children from three public elementary and two middle (junior high) schools in Central Texas. Overall mean backpack weight was 5.8 kg (SD=2.1) but differed significantly ( P =.018) between children who reported that a parent had previously checked their backpack contents (5.6 kg; SD=2.2) and those children whose parents had never checked their backpack contents (6.1 kg; SD=2.0). Reported parental knowledge of their children's backpack contents was significantly associated with the child's age and male sex as well as parental knowledge of the backpack weight. Increasing age of children was associated with decreased reported parental knowledge of the children's backpack contents. Compared with parents of children aged 13 through 15 years, parents of children aged 5 through 6 years were six times more likely to have previously checked their child's backpack contents (adjusted OR=6.23, 95% CI=1.70-23.31). These findings suggest that parents need to be educated about being familiar with the contents of their children's backpack contents irrespective of the child's age or sex.  


December 2006 Texas Medicine Contents
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