University of Connecticut University of UC Title Fallback Connecticut

Focus Area: Strengthening Communities

Positive Behavior Supports (PBS) in 21st Century After School Programs (2010 – Present)

CARHD research associate Dr. Anne Farrell and colleagues are working with the Connecticut State Department of Education and Capital Region Education Council (CREC) to conduct a feasibility and demonstration project on positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) in 21st Century After School Programs. The project includes: preparation of an evidence brief on PBS in after school settings (completed); development, refinement, and assessment of the feasibility, reliability, and validity of an evaluation tool to examine fidelity and quality of PBIS components in afterschool settings (in development); development and production of a DVD introduction to positive cultures in afterschool programs (nearing completion); training, technical assistance, and consultation with State personnel and providers; and preparation of reports and recommendations for future work in this area (ongoing).

 

Positive Behavior in Out Of School Time (P-Boost) (2013-Present)

CARHD research associate Dr. Anne Farrell and colleagues work to embed Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports (PBIS) in participating 21st Century Community Learning Centers (afterschool programs) in Connecticut. The P-BOOST team oriented program leadership staff to PBIS, provided professional development to after school professionals who work directly with children and youth, and developed and disseminated curriculum materials support PBIS knowledge, competencies, and implementation. The current demonstration project incorporates three levels of implementation support, including (a) regular fidelity reviews, (b) performance feedback to staff, and (c) coaching related to program-level and staff-level change. Implementation is assessed through adapted PBIS measures (i.e., School-wide Evaluation Tool, Benchmarks of Quality) and a developed staff-level measure, Measure of Active Supervision and Interaction (MASI). Current work includes evaluation of the demonstration project, preparation of reports and publications, and development for subsequent project iterations. P-BOOST is supported by Connecticut State Department of Education and Capital Region Education Council (CREC).

 

School Attendance Model Kindergarten Program (2014-Present)

CARHD has been contracted by the State of Connecticut Office of Policy and Management in conjunction with the Criminal Justice Policy and Planning Division to develop and evaluate a model designed to improve kindergarten attendance. The model requires that outreach workers be designated to work specifically with kindergarteners in schools throughout Connecticut to support their school attendance. Participating schools are expected to monitor the attendance of all kindergarten students. The outreach worker will contact kindergarten students identified early on as being, or at risk of becoming, chronically absent. Another level of intervention addresses students who experience a period of chronic absenteeism, and involves home visits and connecting families with needed community resources.

The Center is assisting eleven school districts implement the model and manage data collection. The Center provides training to outreach workers, manages a central database, conducts data analyses, and provides reports summarizing the evaluation results.