ERIC Number: ED449281
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Given the Nature of Family Centers, How Can We Craft a Meaningful Evaluation?
Stephens, S. A.
Many communities have family centers, though there is no one definition of what a family center is. Family centers provide families with preventive supports which encourage them to engage actively in building on their own strengths, setting their own goals for change, and managing their own use of available formal services. Family centers are oriented to the family as a whole unit and its individual members as whole persons. Family centers challenge traditional program evaluation methods. This paper addresses several questions about the evaluation of family centers, including: "What assumptions about participation and outcomes underlie most program evaluation strategies?"; "What is the special nature of family center work?"; "What is known about how families change?"; "What is known about family participation in family centers?"; "What can be expected about the relationship between family center participation and family change?"; "How should evaluations be designed to fully capture the individual, community, and system effects or benefits of family centers?"; and "What is necessary to ensure that family centers can effectively take part in evaluation?" References to examples of family center evaluations by the Center for Assessment and Policy Development are provided. (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center for Assessment and Policy Development, Bala Cynwyd, PA.