Evaluation of Family Preservation and Reunification Programs: Interim Report. Chapter 7: The Services


In this Chapter, we describe the services provided to families in both the family preservation and control groups. We are concerned with describing the experiences of these families in these programs and with making comparisons between the experimental and control groups. We must determine whether the experimental group received more services and more intense services in order to assess the extent to which the tended experimental conditions held. The interpretation of outcome information depends on a demonstration that experimental services were more extensive than “regular” services. We also attempt to compare the services received by the experimental group to the Homebuilders model, to get at questions of the extent to which the model was implemented. Finally, we describe how the families experienced these programs.

Most of the data come from the second interview with caretakers and caseworkers in which we asked questions about services offered and received during the period since random assignment and from the contact forms completed by workers serving both groups. In the follow-up interview a year after random assignment, caretakers were also asked about services received since the post-treatment interview and we report on analyses of those data at the end of this chapter. Comparisons were made between experimental and control group families as they were initially randomly assigned (the "primary analysis";). "Secondary"; analyses, where violations of random assignment and cases receiving minimal service are dropped, were also performed. Tables showing secondary analyses are provided in Appendix H. In most cases, secondary analyses show similar results to those of the primary analyses. Differences are highlighted in footnotes to the following text.