Driving with Data: How to Strengthen Programmatic Planning
Apter & O’Connor adds their real world experience and training expertise to New York State’s effort to improve accountability among child welfare organizations. In light of the today’s difficult economic climate, agencies and local governments are being held to high standards to demonstrate impact and effectiveness of the programs they deliver. This project is funded by the New York State Office of Children and Family Services and is led by the Professional Development Program of Rockefeller College SUNY Albany. Apter & O’Connor has worked with PDP on previous state-wide quality improvement initiatives and as a result of those successful contracts, was asked to join this training team. Cynthia O’Connor and Dianne Apter have traveled across the New York State for the last nine months providing trainings and technical assistance to county departments of social services and their children’s preventive service providers. The curriculum and TA is designed to develop a capacity for evaluation and continuous program improvement. The trainings focus on the three elements of Program Accountability – Quality, Efficiency, and Effectiveness – and offer an introduction to tools and skills necessary for program planning based on actual performance and impact. The results are improved program plans and contracts that include measurable outcomes with specific benchmarks and reporting systems to track progress.