CPR is engaged in a variety of research, evaluation, and technical assistance projects.
CPR is evaluating Oregon’s efforts to address parenting time at the child support agency during the order establishment process. Oregon is testing the use of mediation and developing an online interactive tool for parents to use in developing a parenting plan, referred to as an Interactive Parenting Plan (IPP). In addition to evaluating the accessibility and effectiveness of offering mediation services to parents in the child support system, CPR is conducting a process evaluation of the IPP with the goal of making its replication feasible for other jurisdictions interested in helping parents establish parenting time plans.
CPR is providing technical assistance to Colorado and Tennessee’s Child Support Noncustodial Parent Employment Demonstration project (CSPED), an eight-state project testing the effectiveness of providing enhanced child support services, employment services and responsible fatherhood programming to noncustodial parents in the child support system. CPR works closely with each state’s project director to provide implementation assistance, ongoing data management, continuous quality improvement monitoring and project management duties.
In 2015, CPR assisted three states. CPR provided technical assistance to Pennsylvania on its quadrennial child support guidelines review; specifically, we analyzed economic data on the cost of raising children and case file data on the application of and the deviation from the presumptive guidelines formula. CPR presented these findings to the Pennsylvania committee responsible for reviewing the guidelines and providing recommendations for changes. We also assisted Ohio in developing an updated, proposed guidelines including a schedule based on current economic data. CPR assisted a workgroup, authorized by the Minnesota legislature that is charged with recommending a parenting-time formula appropriate for the state.
CPR is working with MDRC and MEF Associates to improve outcomes of child support programs in eight states by implementing behaviorally informed service interventions and conducting rigorous, rapid-cycle evaluations. Funded by the U.S Office of Child Support Enforcement, BICS uses a variety of behavioral economics concepts and language to help participating agencies diagnose their procedures and materials in order to identify the problems to be addressed. CPR staff serve as child support experts for each of the eight-state technical assistance teams, and help to develop and test interventions that seek to better engage noncustodial parents in the child support process.
Father Engagement & Healthy Relationships
The Fatherhood Research and Practice Network (FRPN) is a five-year initiative funded by Office of Planning Research and Evaluation to build the evidence base for fatherhood programming. Co-directed by Jessica Pearson of CPR and Jay Fagan, professor of social work, Temple University, FRPN funds teams of researchers and practitioners to conduct rigorous research; provides technical assistance to grantees to improve the quality of the research they conduct; builds the capacity of researchers and fatherhood practitioners by conducting webinars, training programs, preparing written materials, and conducting original research on fatherhood; and disseminates new research and best practices through a comprehensive website, www.frpn.org.
Economic Security & Healthcare
We are working with the Department of Healthcare Policy and Finance (HCPF) to explore adding home delivered meals (HDM) to the Colorado Medicaid Waiver. We conducted a literature review to summarize the research on the impact of HDM on health and health care costs. This project also involves an analysis of available data and interviews with key informants.
CPR is conducting a Formative Evaluation of Colorado’s Pathways to Success Phase II project. Pathways to Success seeks to address the issue of homelessness and human trafficking among youth aging out of foster care system in three Colorado sites. This project is testing an enhanced model approach to providing services to youth ages 16-21 currently in foster care or who are homeless. The model program fits into Colorado’s State 9-25 statewide youth plan and hopes to become a model for other state child welfare agencies and runaway and homeless youth service providers. CPR’s Phase II evaluation plan calls for usability testing of the intervention components, and ongoing continuous quality improvement. A cost analysis will be conducted as well, which will be part of the final report.
The State Court Improvement Program (CIP) was created in 1993. It provides federal funds to state child welfare agencies and tribes for preventive services and services to families at risk or in crisis. As of fiscal year 2001 all eligible states (50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico) are receiving annual Court Improvement Program grants. CPR has been working with the Louisiana Court Improvement Program since conducting the CIP Reassessment in 2005. CPR conducted an evaluation of a child protection mediation program in two Louisiana parishes, and conducted research on new models of legal representation for indigent parents and children that the state adopted in 2010. CPR also conducted an evaluation of a pilot family drug court in Caddo Parish, and has worked with the Court Improvement Program, The Pelican Center for Children and Families, the Louisiana Foster Parent Association, and the Department of Children and Family Services on needs assessments of Louisiana foster parents.
We are evaluating several programs and efforts at The National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV). One project involves a satisfaction survey and outcome evaluation of WomensLaw.org–a website of resources for legal issues related to domestic violence and sexual assault. We are also conducting an advocacy evaluation of their public policy efforts. Finally, we are working with NNEDV to identify the core components that explain–and can be used to evaluate–their training and technical assistance efforts as a whole.
We are working with the Colorado Coalition Against Domestic Violence to evaluate a statewide domestic violence prevention effort. This community-based project involves a process evaluation to understand the resources, capacity, support, and activities that facilitate a successful implementation of the prevention effort. We will also conduct an outcome evaluation of their efforts.
We are working with the Colorado Department of Human Services’ Domestic Violence Program as part of an ongoing effort to evaluate the services provided by domestic violence agencies. We are in Phase II of this effort (results from Phase I are reported here), which involves a multi-site pilot of a new set of assessment and evaluation tools.
Early Childhood & Education
CPR’s director, Jessica Pearson, designed and directed A+ Angels, a program at Denver’s East High School which pairs students who struggle academically with adult volunteers. Over 12 years, the program grew to involve more than 100 mentor-student pairs who meet weekly to build relationships and work on homework, longer-term projects and graduation requirements. Mentors help their students navigate the system, self-advocate, and experience a bigger world. Since the program’s inception, East’s graduation rate has climbed from 75 to 91 percent and in 2015, East High School formally adopted the program and assigned its leadership to a teacher, assuring its continued existence. CPR’s evaluations of A+ Angels track changes in academic performance before and after program participation including school attendance, grade point average, and standardized test scores.