Feasibility Study for the Evaluation of DHHS Programs That Are or May Be Operated Under Tribal Self-Governance. Availability, Accessibility, and Quality of Data on DHHS Programs That May Be Operated by Tribes Under A Self-Governance Demonstration

03/03/2004

In general, information collected during the site visits indicated that all sites currently managing the programs have persons or information available that would help evaluators to  better understand the process that led to Tribal management of these programs.  Moreover, each site indicated to us that they are currently completing all required Federal reporting forms for each program and that these would be available through hard copy or disk from each Tribe for the time period since the Tribe began managing the program. Some Tribes indicated that they were collecting additional information which would also be available.  All Tribes indicated that accounting records were available for these programs beginning with Tribal management. Other program information obtained during the site visits included:

  • Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.  Two of the six Tribes either manage this program or are preparing to manage this program.  Both Tribes indicated that individuals and documentation are available that can provide information on how the Tribe came to manage this program and Tribal goals for this management.  One Tribe uses their overall database of social programs to record client and service information.  This database is by person and records all services received for that person within the center in which the program is housed. This database can also be used to track outcomes.
  • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.  Three of the six Tribes manage this program.  Levels of record keeping ranged from brief records of services to extensive, very detailed records.  Types of data generally available in varying levels of detail included: number of households assisted, amount of assistance, purpose of assistance. Also, poverty status and age of recipient were available from one site.
  • Community Services Block Grant. Two of the six Tribes visited receive Community Services Block Grants.  At both Tribes, records of services included name of recipient, amount, service, and circumstances of needed service.
  • Child Care and Development Fund. Five of the Tribes visited manage this program.[14] Most of the Tribes reported that they used computer software to track the following information: children and families served, hours of childcare, providers, payments to providers, and parent payments.  
  • Native Employment Works.  None of the six Tribes manage this program.
  • Head Start.  Four of the six Tribes manage this program.  Most of the Tribes visited use computerized by-child records as the basis for their Head Start reports though a few must retrieve all data for reports from hard copy files for each child.  These by-child records are then used to generate summary reports required by Head Start.  Summary reports also require staff and center information that must be retrieved from other records. Hardcopy or disk copies of these reports could be provided on an on-going basis.  All Tribes indicated awareness of the required extensive outcome measurements and reported efforts to comply with that activity. These data would be available for each child.
  • Child Welfare Services.  Four of the six Tribes manage these programs.  While a few Tribes maintained computerized databases by child, most indicated that their records are hard copy.  Reports and the data in them for these programs varied widely across the Tribes.  Narrative reports generally listed the number of children served and services provided.
  • Promoting Safe and Stable Families.  Only one Tribe managed this program. This Tribe maintains a child registry database for all children served by the center where this program is managed.  The Tribe reported that this database will be used by the Tribe to track outcomes as well as services. 
  • Family Violence Prevention: Grants for Battered Women’s Shelters.  Four of the six Tribes receive these grants.  For most Tribes hard copy reports were available.  (One Tribe maintains a child registry database for all children served by the center where this program is managed.)   The content of these hard copy reports varied widely.  
  • Administration on Aging Grants for Native Americans.  Five of the six Tribes receive these grants.   Hard copy data on services provided under the grant are maintained by these Tribes.
  • SAMHSA Targeted Capacity Expansion Grants.  Only one Tribe visited manages this program and services were provided through the Health Center.