Evaluation of Family Preservation and Reunification Programs: Final Report - Volume One. 1.4 Data Sources


To obtain these measures, we used multiple data sources, including administrative data, interviews with investigating workers, caseworkers and caretakers, and qualitative data collection on program operation and context.

For family preservation/placement prevention sites, the study used a longitudinal design in which caretakers were interviewed at three points in time: when they entered the study, at the end of services, and at one year after entry to the study. Caseworkers were interviewed at two points in time, when the family entered the study and at the end of services. Investigating workers completed a self-administered form as quickly after assignment as possible. They were asked to provide a description of the allegation and the investigation findings. Caseworkers were asked to provide information on the actual services provided during in-person contacts with the family during treatment for the experimental cases and during a comparable time period for the control cases. Administrative data on placement and subsequent maltreatment were collected for 18 months after enrollment on each case.

An interim evaluation report was released in October 2000. The interim report presented description, service, and outcome analyses for the Homebuilders study sites. This report expands on the interim report by including description, service, and outcome analyses of the non-Homebuilders site. Additionally, analyses on sample attrition, social support, investigating worker questionnaires, staff questionnaires, and secondary analyses are included in this report. (9)

To preserve the distinct nature between the Homebuilders programs (Kentucky, New Jersey, and Tennessee) and non-Homebuilders programs (Philadelphia), the description and analysis are presented separately. This report consists of three volumes. The Executive Summary and Study Overviews are provided in both Volumes One and Two. In addition, each volume provides the following:

Volume One - Study implementation, descriptions of each study site, and a description of the families for the Homebuilders sites.

Volume Two - Services for the Homebuilders sites, outcome analysis for the Homebuilders sites, description and analysis on the Philadelphia family preservation, attrition analysis for the study; social support; investigating worker questionnaire analysis; staff questionnaire analysis; and study conclusions.

Volume Three - Appendices A through K, which include study protocols, forms, secondary analysis and questionnaires.


Barth, Richard P. (1990) "Theories Guiding Home-Based Intensive Family Preservation Services," in J.K. Whittaker, J. Kinney, E.M. Tracey, and C. Booth, eds., Reaching High-Risk Families: Intensive Family Preservation in Human Services. New York: Aldine de Gruyter, 1990.

James Bell Associates. (1997). "Interim Report: The Family Preservation and Family Support Services (FP/FS) Implementation Study Volume I," submitted to DHHS, ACF, contract no. 105-94-8103.

Nelson, K. E.; Landsman, M. J.; and Deutelbaum, W. (Jan.-Feb. 1990) "Three Models of Family-Centered Placement Prevention Services." Child Welfare vol. 69, 3-21.

Nelson K. (1994). Family-based Services for Families and Children at Risk of Out-of-Home Placement. Child Welfare Research Review I, 83-108.

Westat, Chapin Hall Center for Children, and James Bell Associates. (1998). "A Review of Family Preservation and Reunification Programs" submitted to DHHS, ASPE, contract no. HHS-100-94-0020.

Westat, Chapin Hall Center for Children, and James Bell Associates. (1998) "Evaluation of the New York City HomeRebuilders Demonstration," submitted to DHHS, ASPE, contract No HHS-100-94-0020.


8. Lexington, Kentucky, remained in the study only a short time. Further details on Lexington are presented in Chapter 3, Kentucky Overview.

9. As to be expected with any program, some of the families assigned to family preservation programs did not receive the services or received a minimal dosage of the services. In addition, a small number of the families in the control group were actually provided family preservation services. To address these issues, analyses were conducted in which these cases were dropped (secondary analysis).

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