The Opportunity Index uses 20 indicators across four dimensions to provide users with a numerical measurement of opportunity across all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The four dimensions of community well-being are: the economy, education, health, and community. To better understand how each dimension and its indicators help to craft this unique score, the Forum will take a deep dive into each, identifying its impact on opportunity, implications for change, and policies that could help communities move forward.
Moving from Research to Implementation in Social and Emotional Learning: Exploring the Kernels of Practice with Stephanie Jones
There’s a growing consensus in the youth-serving field of the vital importance of social and emotional learning (SEL) for young people. Research over many years suggests that preparing children to be caring, ethical, contributing adults requires supporting them to develop social and emotional skills. These skills include focusing and deploying attention, understanding and managing emotions, empathizing with and respecting others, navigating social conflicts effectively, and standing up for principles of justice and fairness.
The City of Seattle and King County are now testing a new housing intervention called the Creating Moves to Opportunity (CMTO) project. CMTO tests a more personalized response to the proven idea that place matters for children and that moving young people to neighborhoods of higher opportunity can lead to positive economic, health and education outcomes. This blog will examine the research that informed this project, the promising results that Seattle and King County have demonstrated so far, and how this body of research has equity implications for both program design and research.
In September, the Forum's President & CEO Karen Pittman spoke with Camille Farrington, one of the chief architects of the Foundations for Young Adult Success framework, to explore how the framework remains critical to our efforts to put children and youth at the center and address equity.
More than a year has passed since the federal government announced its goal of developing a comprehensive strategy for using and managing data to deliver on mission, serve customers, and steward resources while respecting privacy and confidentiality. Now the government has released a draft year-one action plan and is seeking public input on its scope and content. This blog includes our organization's submitted comments on the Federal Data Strategy.
High-quality preschool is the gift that keeps on giving. At least that’s what Nobel Prize-winning economist Jim Heckman’s research shows. The IQ scores of the 123 low-income children who attended Perry Preschool in Ypsilanti, Mich., did not improve significantly as was hoped.
The 2019 Landscape: What Do New Governors and Legislation Mean for State Children’s Cabinets So Far?
In January 2019, on the heels of gubernatorial elections, twenty new governors assumed office in states across the country, bringing with them new policies, priorities, and people. One critical and under-recognized area of impact? State-level children’s coordinating bodies--often known as children’s cabinets--which bring together state and sometimes private agencies whose work promotes the wellbeing of children and youth. Moreover, some state legislatures have recently taken action on children’s cabinets. Half a year into these new administrations, where do states stand?
The Federal Data Strategy Year-One Action Plan: What It Is, Why You Should Care, and How to Weigh In
More than a year has passed since the federal government announced its goal of developing a comprehensive strategy for using and managing data to deliver on mission, serve customers, and steward resources while respecting privacy and confidentiality. Now the government has released a draft year-one action plan and is seeking public input on its scope and content. This blog summarizes the draft year-one action plan and explains how members of the public, researchers, interest groups, and state and local policymakers can offer feedback.
In April, the Forum for Youth Investment and the Urban Institute brought together policymakers and practitioners from across levels of government and the non-profit sector to discuss Using Evidence for Improvement in the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act. The event featured a panel of speakers from federal, state and local agencies to share how they have used evidence to improve programs, with closing remarks from the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on what agencies should consider as they begin to implement the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (Evidence Act).
The FY 2020 AP chapter “Building and Using Evidence to Improve Government Effectiveness” can help policymakers, researchers, and service providers understand the federal government approach and priorities for using evidence in policymaking. It focuses on four key areas: (1) evidence-building strategies to learn and improve, (2) evaluation as a tool to learn and improve, (3) harnessing data for learning and improvement, and (4) promoting transparency and accountability in federal evidence-building. These four areas demonstrate how the federal government is moving forward on a number of key ideas found in the Forum’s recent work.
There is no question that I am a fan of out-of-school time (OST) systems — data-driven, coordinated community-level efforts to improve access to quality before and after school and summer learning experiences. Just check my track record to know I have helped incubate dozens of them across the country, both as part of The Wallace Foundation team as well as a Big Picture Approach consultant with the Forum for Youth Investment.