Prevention of behavioural problems in children

    Research into the effectiveness of prevention programmes and the required competencies of primary school teachers

    Publication date: 01 April 2016

    Rotterdam has relatively many children of the primary school age with severe psychosocial problems. Aggression, rebellious behaviour and hyperactivity are among the most common psychosocial problems in this group. Important conditions for successful prevention of psychological problems for these children is knowing which prevention programmes are effective and which children need more intensive support and care. This study answers these questions.


    The study

    The aim of the study is to answer the question to what extent the combination of the universal prevention programme Taakspel [Task game] (for all children in a classroom) and the child-focused prevention programme Alles Kidzzz (for children who benefit insufficiently from the universal prevention programmes) is more effective in reducing psychosocial problems in children, than these programmes separately, or than “normal” education. Four conditions are compared in this study:

    1. Taakspel & Alles Kidzzz;
    2. Taakspel;
    3. Alles Kidzzz;
    4. What schools normally offer.

    It is expected that condition 4 will be the most effective. But to be certain, research is needed. In addition, the professional factors that influence the quality of the implementation are also studied.

    Identifying variables that have an influence on the extent to which children can benefit from a prevention programme is an important next step to improve prevention programmes and the training of professionals. The research helps professionals and researchers who develop prevention programmes to learn to understand for which children certain programmes work or not and why.


    The study aims to develop prevention programmes in which proven prevention programmes for specific problems of certain groups of children can be offered cost-effectively. The study yields knowledge that can help more children in a better, more timely (preventive) and maybe also cheaper way. This type of knowledge also offers insight into the required competencies of professionals (teachers and counsellors in adequate education) to successfully implement prevention strategies in practice, and how to properly acquire these competences.