Cover image for Social programs that work
Social programs that work
Crane, Jonathan, 1959-
Publication Information:
New York : Russell Sage Foundation, [1998]

Physical Description:
x, 324 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Building on success / Jonathan Crane -- Success for all : achievement outcomes of a schoolwide reform model / Robert E. Slavin ... [et al.] -- Reading one-to-one : an intensive program serving a great many students while still achieving large effects / George Farkas -- The Chicago Child-Parent Center and Expansion Program : a study of extended early childhood intervention / Arthur J. Reynolds -- High/Scope Perry Preschool Program effects at age twenty-seven / Lawrence J. Schweinhart and David P. Weikart -- Enhancing the life course for high-risk children : results from the Abecedarian Project / Craig T. Ramey, Frances A. Campbell, and Clancy Blair -- The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children / Barbara Devaney -- Preventing adolescent substance abuse : lessons from the Project ALERT program / Phyllis L. Ellickson -- Preventing adolescent drug abuse through life skills training : theory, methods, and effectiveness / Gilbert J. Botvin -- Models of community treatment for serious juvenile offenders / Patricia Chamberlain and Kevin Moore -- Are welfare employment programs effective? / Lawrence M. Mead.
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Many Americans seem convinced that government programs designed to help the poor have failed. Social Programs That Work shows that this is not true. Many programs have demonstrably improved the lives of people trapped at the bottom of the social and economic ladder. Social Programs That Work provides an in-depth look at some of the nation's best interventions over the past few decades, and considers their potential for national expansion.

Examined here are programs designed to improve children's reading skills, curb juvenile delinquency and substance abuse, and move people off welfare into the workforce. Each contributor discusses the design and implementation of a particular program, and assesses how well particular goals were met. Among the critical issues addressed: Are good results permanent, or do they fade over time? Can they be replicated successfully under varied conditions? Are programs cost effective, and if so are the benefits seen immediately or only over the long term? How can public support be garnered for a large upfront investment whose returns may not be apparent for years? Some programs discussed in this volume were implemented only on a small, experimental scale, prompting discussion of their viability at the national level.

An important concern for social policy is whether one-shot programs can lead to permanent results. Early interventions may be extremely effective at reducing future criminal behavior, as shown by the results of the High/Scope Perry preschool program. Evidence from the Life Skills Training Program suggests that a combination of initial intervention and occasional booster sessions can be an inexpensive and successful approach to reducing adolescent substance abuse. Social Programs That Work also acknowledges that simply placing welfare recipients in jobs isn't enough; they will also need long-term support to maintain those jobs.

The successes and failures of social policy over the last thirty-five years have given us valuable feedback about the design of successful social policy. Social Programs That Work represents a landmark attempt to use social science criteria to identify and strengthen the programs most likely to make a real difference in addressing the nation's social ills.

Author Notes

JONATHAN CRANE is director of the National Center for Research on Social Programs in Chicago, Illinois.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

There are a lot of publications available about social programs, but the Russell Sage Foundation has gone one step further by publishing this title. Crane, director of the National Center for Research on Social Programs, Chicago, has assembled a collection of ten programs that work. The study grew out of a conference entitled "Social Programs That Really Work" held at the University of Chicago in 1995. The book is actually a reaction to the negativity surrounding social programs in the United States. The foundation and conference leaders wanted to show that there are programs out there that do work and, more importantly, why these programs were successful and how to replicate their success. Twenty experts in their field contributed to this book, evaluating programs according to well-defined criteria for success. Each program is thoroughly researched and analyzed. Essential for academic libraries supporting social programs.ÄSandra Isaacson, U.S. EPA ESD-LV Lib., Las Vegas (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Jonathan CraneRobert E. Slavin and Nancy A. Madden and Lawrence J. Dolan and Barbara A. Wasik and Steven M. Ross and Lana J. Smith and Marcella DiandaGeorge FarkasArthur J. ReynoldsLawrence J. Schweinhart and David P. WeikartCraig T. Ramey and Frances A. Campbell and Clancy BlairBarbara DevaneyPhyllis L. EllicksonGilbert J. BotvinPatricia Chamberlain and Kevin MooreLawrence M. Mead
Contributorsp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Chapter 1 Building on Successp. 1
Chapter 2 Success for All: Achievement Outcomes of a Schoolwide Reform Modelp. 43
Chapter 3 Reading One-to-One: An Intensive Program Serving a Great Many Students While Still Achieving Large Effectsp. 75
Chapter 4 The Chicago Child-Parent Center and Expansion Program: A Study of Extended Early Childhood Interventionp. 110
Chapter 5 High/Scope Perry Preschool Program Effects at Age Twenty-Sevenp. 148
Chapter 6 Enhancing the Life Course for High-Risk Children: Results from the Abecedarian Projectp. 163
Chapter 7 The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Childrenp. 184
Chapter 8 Preventing Adolescent Substance Abuse: Lessons from the Project ALERT Programp. 201
Chapter 9 Preventing Adolescent Drug Abuse Through Life Skills Training: Theory, Methods, and Effectivenessp. 225
Chapter 10 Models of Community Treatment for Serious Juvenile Offendersp. 258
Chapter 11 Are Welfare Employment Programs Effective?p. 277
Indexp. 317