PREVIOUS STUDIES regarding the etiological importance of family background in childhood schizophrenia have produced diverse findings and impressions. Kanner4 has stated that autistic children are usually found to have intelligent, sophisticated parents who have attained a high educational level. In his population of autistic patients, 94% of the parents were high school graduates, while 74% of the fathers and 49% of the mothers had completed college. In another publication,3 he remarked on a low incidence of divorce among these families. Bender,1 on the other hand, has noted that no such trends exist among the parents of schizophrenic children seen at Bellevue, but rather that these children come from a wide variety of backgrounds.
It has also been reported that a fairly high ratio of boys to girls is common in a schizophrenic population, and that these children are frequently the firstborn in their sibling group. Bender2