The Los Angeles Child Welfare-Early Education Partners Infrastructure Project, Final Evaluation.
Franke, Todd. Klein, Sasha. Lee, Sei Young. Benson, Stephanie.
Regency of University of CA.
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This report describes an evaluation of the Los Angeles Child Welfare-Early Education Partners Infrastructure Project (LACWEEP), which was funded from October 2011 to August 2013 by a U.S. Children's Bureau grant. The overarching goal of LACWEEP was to increase access to high quality early care and education (ECE) services for young children in the child welfare system in Long Beach, California. It sought to improve collaboration between the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and the ECE service sector as a means of increasing ECE referrals, enrollment, and supports for children birth through four-year old with open DCFS cases who are residing in the City of Long Beach. The evaluation of the program included both a process and an outcome study. The process study focused on verifying accomplishments of the project's infrastructure building activities via a combination of direct observation, document review, software demonstration, and key informant interviews. The outcome study focused on assessing the extent to which the project strengthen collaborative relationships and improved service coordination, increased knowledge among South County Region child welfare staff, ECE providers, Juvenile Dependency Court personnel, parents, and caregivers regarding the benefits of ECE, and increased access to high quality ECE services for DCFS children birth through 4. Findings indicate LACWEEP was largely successful in meeting infrastructure development and outcome objectives. The report concludes with a list of recommendations for improving child welfare-early education coordination and increasing child welfare-supervised children?s access to high quality early education services based on the evaluation findings. 40 references. (Author abstract modified)
early childhood education; foster children; early intervention programs; interagency collaboration; referral; California; professional training