Assessing the Field of Post-Adoption Services: Family Needs, Program Models, and Evaluation Issues. Summary Report. 6.3.2 Facilitating Evaluation


What strategies can improve evaluation quality and reduce its burden for PAS programs?

Moving forward: We know that the diversity and complexity of the PAS program offerings make it extremely challenging to evaluate post-adoption services. While the field works to determine which programs are most effective for those families who need substantial amounts of clinical services, evaluation efforts are needed to document and assess other commonly delivered services, and their delivery as part of multifaceted PAS programs. Although it may not be feasible to precisely quantify the specific impact of less intensive services such as information and referral and support groups, there is much to be learned about issues such as which families use these services, in what quantities and patterns, and how they work together to address the needs that families identify.

Because the staff time required is a major barrier to evaluation, providing a ready resource of PAS evaluation tools and strategies would substantially facilitate the process. A minimum data set along with electronic data collection and scoring tools would help make the evaluation enterprise less onerous. Technical assistance in evaluation could build capacity among service providers with little or no experience in evaluation.

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