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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Hamadyk, Jill; Gardiner, Karen
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2019

    This brief summarizes the experiences of leaders and staff from eight career pathways programs that participated in the Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE) Evaluation. Based on firsthand accounts, the brief describes how staff perceived the benefits of participating in the randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluation, the challenges they experienced—in particular recruiting study participants and implementing its random assignment procedures—and how they overcame challenges. The brief then describes lessons staff learned from participating in PACE. The insights presented below will be helpful for future evaluation teams as they approach potential study sites, as well as for programs considering participating in a rigorous evaluation. (Edited author introduction)

     

    This brief summarizes the experiences of leaders and staff from eight career pathways programs that participated in the Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE) Evaluation. Based on firsthand accounts, the brief describes how staff perceived the benefits of participating in the randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluation, the challenges they experienced—in particular recruiting study participants and implementing its random assignment procedures—and how they overcame challenges. The brief then describes lessons staff learned from participating in PACE. The insights presented below will be helpful for future evaluation teams as they approach potential study sites, as well as for programs considering participating in a rigorous evaluation. (Edited author introduction)

     

  • Individual Author: Hahn, Heather; Rohacek, Monica; Isaacs, Julia
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    Child care subsidies are critical for the well-being of low-income families, including parents’ economic success and children’s development. To inform state efforts to simplify access to child care subsidies and improve service delivery, this report highlights steps taken and lessons learned by five states that participated in the Work Support Strategies initiative between 2012 and 2015. These states worked to improve child care subsidy access and retention, efficiency of service delivery, quality of client service, and alignment with other benefit programs. The report also discusses the implications of these findings for implementation of the reauthorized Child Care and Development Fund. (Author abstract)

    Child care subsidies are critical for the well-being of low-income families, including parents’ economic success and children’s development. To inform state efforts to simplify access to child care subsidies and improve service delivery, this report highlights steps taken and lessons learned by five states that participated in the Work Support Strategies initiative between 2012 and 2015. These states worked to improve child care subsidy access and retention, efficiency of service delivery, quality of client service, and alignment with other benefit programs. The report also discusses the implications of these findings for implementation of the reauthorized Child Care and Development Fund. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Fein, David; Hamadyk, Jill
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    This report assesses the implementation and early impacts of Year Up, a national sectoral training program for young adults aged 18-24. Year Up aims to help low-income, low-skilled adults access and complete training leading to employment in high-demand, well-paying occupations. It is among nine programs Abt Associates is evaluating in Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE)—a study sponsored by the Administration for Children and Families. Operated by an organization of the same name, Year Up provides young adults with six months of full-time training in the IT and financial service sectors followed by six-month internships at major firms. The full-time program provides extensive supports—including weekly stipends—and puts a heavy emphasis on the development of professional and technical skills. Using a rigorous research design, the study found that young adults with access to Year Up had higher average quarterly earnings in the sixth and seventh quarters after random assignment—the confirmatory outcome selected to gauge Year Up’s overall success for this report....

    This report assesses the implementation and early impacts of Year Up, a national sectoral training program for young adults aged 18-24. Year Up aims to help low-income, low-skilled adults access and complete training leading to employment in high-demand, well-paying occupations. It is among nine programs Abt Associates is evaluating in Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE)—a study sponsored by the Administration for Children and Families. Operated by an organization of the same name, Year Up provides young adults with six months of full-time training in the IT and financial service sectors followed by six-month internships at major firms. The full-time program provides extensive supports—including weekly stipends—and puts a heavy emphasis on the development of professional and technical skills. Using a rigorous research design, the study found that young adults with access to Year Up had higher average quarterly earnings in the sixth and seventh quarters after random assignment—the confirmatory outcome selected to gauge Year Up’s overall success for this report. Compared to control group members who were not able to access the program, treatment group members also were more likely to report that their classes used active learning methods, taught life skills, and were relevant to their lives and careers. Persisting over a three-year follow-up period, Year Up’s earnings impacts are the largest reported to date for workforce programs tested using a random assignment design. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Judkins, David; Fein, David; Buron, Larry
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    The Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE) evaluation is a study of nine promising programs that use a “career pathways” framework for increasing education, employment, and self-sufficiency among low-income individuals and families. Funded by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, PACE will include three points of participant follow-up—at 18 months, three years, and six years after random assignment. The first round of reports, covering program implementation and impacts at 18 months after random assignment, were produced in 2017-2018, and published on the ACF Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE) website (www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/pathways-for-advancing-careers-and...).

    This Analysis Plan is for the second round of reports, covering three years after random assignment. This is the second supplement to the ...

    The Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE) evaluation is a study of nine promising programs that use a “career pathways” framework for increasing education, employment, and self-sufficiency among low-income individuals and families. Funded by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, PACE will include three points of participant follow-up—at 18 months, three years, and six years after random assignment. The first round of reports, covering program implementation and impacts at 18 months after random assignment, were produced in 2017-2018, and published on the ACF Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE) website (www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/pathways-for-advancing-careers-and...).

    This Analysis Plan is for the second round of reports, covering three years after random assignment. This is the second supplement to the Evaluation Design Report (Abt Associates 2014), which provided general plans for the PACE evaluation. The first supplement (Abt Associates 2015) was the Analysis Plan for the PACE Implementation and Early Impact Study, covering each program’s implementation and impacts in the first 18 months after random assignment. This Analysis Plan provides more details than the earlier documents for the third-year analyses, including detailed specification of the participant outcomes measured. 

    A long-term study and third round of reports, covering six years after random assignment, is underway. (Author overview)

     

  • Individual Author: Winston, Pamela; Antelo, Lauren; Bennett, Rashaun
    Reference Type: Conference Paper
    Year: 2018

    Around the time of childbirth, low-income families are at particular risk of falling into poverty for reasons including mothers’ separation from work. Passage of the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (also known as Welfare Reform), with its time limits and work requirements, set the expectation that poor and low-income parents with young children work in the labor market. Paid Family Leave (PFL)—in the states that have it—provides a short period of partially subsidized wages to new parents so they can afford to take time off to care for and bond with their child. Research indicates that PFL is associated with higher rates of post-birth work attachment among mothers and higher rates of return to their prior employers, including among lower wage mothers. The President’s FY 2019 budget includes a proposal for PFL for new parents. The DHHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), Office of Human Services Policy, is conducting a qualitative study to better understand factors that facilitate—and inhibit—lower income...

    Around the time of childbirth, low-income families are at particular risk of falling into poverty for reasons including mothers’ separation from work. Passage of the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (also known as Welfare Reform), with its time limits and work requirements, set the expectation that poor and low-income parents with young children work in the labor market. Paid Family Leave (PFL)—in the states that have it—provides a short period of partially subsidized wages to new parents so they can afford to take time off to care for and bond with their child. Research indicates that PFL is associated with higher rates of post-birth work attachment among mothers and higher rates of return to their prior employers, including among lower wage mothers. The President’s FY 2019 budget includes a proposal for PFL for new parents. The DHHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), Office of Human Services Policy, is conducting a qualitative study to better understand factors that facilitate—and inhibit—lower income mothers’ returns to work following childbirth and the role of PFL. It is analyzing the relationship between returns to work after childbirth, the use of PFL, and the role of informal and formal child care, among other factors. Focus groups and interviews with lower income mothers of young children are addressing topics including:

    • Mothers’ use of PFL
    • Attachment to work and their pre-birth employers
    • Specific reasons for—and facilitators of—returning to work
    • Challenges to returning to work
    • Actions taken related to work and child care arrangements after childbirth, and
    • Other experiences with PFL as a work support. (Author abstract)

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