Interim Status Report on Research on the Outcomes of Welfare Reform. State Indicators of Children’s Health and Well­Being


Grants were awarded to 13 states in September 1998 for developing and monitoring indicators of children’s health and well­being.  The overall aims of this project are:  (1) to promote state efforts to develop and monitor indicators of the health and well­being of children as welfare reform and other policy changes occur; and (2) to help to institutionalize the use of indicator data in state and local policy work.  In relation to welfare monitoring, the purpose is to help states focus on areas where children’s well­being may be affected — positively or negatively — by welfare policies.  States are encouraged to work on indicator strategies for monitoring the health and well­being of children whose families leave the welfare rolls.

Each state was required to form a partnership of state government agencies with responsibilities for addressing children’s issues.  At a minimum, the partnerships were to include the state welfare agency and state agencies and councils with lead responsibilities for children’s programs.  Technical assistance has been provided for states to work with one another, research and policy experts, and federal staff.  The Department’s Administration for Children and Families also provided funding for this project.  Short descriptions of each state’s project can be found in Appendix B.  States which received awards in FY 1998 will be eligible to apply for continuation funding in FY 1999, based on their advancements in indicator work during the first year and their identified goals, objectives and strategies for advancing their work during the second year.

Estimated Completion Date:  The two­year project period ends in September 2000, although it is anticipated that the states will continue their indicator efforts beyond that time.  Quarterly progress and annual summary reports will be submitted throughout the project period.