Performance Measurement in a Juvenile Residential Treatment Setting

William Scott Cunningham, University at Albany

Service providers at all levels are facing demands from funding agencies to demonstrate program results and effectiveness. In response to these demands, many public agencies are turning to performance measurement. Broadly defined, performance measurement involves the identification of measurable agency outcomes, the tracking of those outcomes over time, and the modification of practice based upon those outcomes. In this study, the early experience with performance measurement in two juvenile residential treatment facilities is analyzed. The process of selecting and measuring outcomes is first described. Second, an analysis of interviews and surveys with staff members about the process is presented. Third, the unique concerns of performance measurement in a treatment setting are explored. Finally, the relationship between organizational characteristics and performance measurement are discussed.

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Updated 05/20/2006