Preparing for a "Next Generation" Evaluation of Independent Living Programs for Youth in Foster Care. Project Overview.
OPRE Report 2014-71.
McDaniel, Marla. Courtney, Mark E. Pergamit, Michael R. Lowenstein, Christopher.
Urban Institute. Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago. United States Administration for Children and Families. Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation.
Published: December 2014
In 2012, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) contracted with the Urban Institute and its partner Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago to plan for the next generation of evaluation activities funded by the Chafee Program. As part of that planning process, the team reviewed current research on youth in foster care. Using this research, a conceptual framework was developed outlining core developmental assets youth need for success in adulthood and fundamental ways the foster care system can help facilitate their preparation. A typology was also created of existing independent living programs, identifying 10 different domains and describing available research evidence on each. To further aid research planning in three areas of special interest to ACF—education, employment, and financial literacy and asset-building programs for youth in foster care and young adults formerly in foster care—the team held meetings with researchers, federal staff, and program experts. Each domain-specific meeting focused on discussion of the current research evidence on program effectiveness for youth in foster care, for vulnerable youth in the general population, and, in the employment domain, for adults; potential programs or types of programs serving youth in foster care ready or nearing readiness for evaluation; and programs serving other youth populations that could be modified to serve youth in foster care and then evaluated. This brief presents the conceptual framework, typology, and central conclusions from the planning efforts for an agenda for future evaluations. 1 table, 1 figure, and 1 reference. (Author abstract modified)
foster adolescents; aging out; independent living skills; research needs; program evaluation