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Working Moms May Not Hurt Baby’s Development

Photo courtesy of the New York Times.

The decision of many mothers to go back to work before their babies are a year old will not be detrimental to the child’s development, according to a recent study co-authored by two social work professors and a child development professor from Columbia University.

This article on the study appeared in the New York Times.

The research was done by social work and public affairs professor Jane Waldfogel, associate social work professor Wen-Jui Han, and child development specialist Jeanne Brooks-Gunn.

The study found the child of mothers who went back to work full-time during the first year performed worse on a series of cognitive tests. However, children did not have any cognitive setbacks if their working moms’ wages boosted family income significantly, the mothers picked high quality child care, or the mothers remained sensitive to their children, the study found.

To learn more about how social workers help children thrive visit the National Association of Social Workers’ “Help Starts Here” Early Childhood Development Web pages by clicking here.

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