• November 2011
  • Vol. 12, No. 8

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Basics for Practice Model Implementation Success

In a recent issue of Child Welfare Matters, the National Child Welfare Resource Center for Organizational Improvement (NRCOI) focuses on how child welfare systems can employ a growing body of knowledge to implement practice models. NCROI used the National Implementation Research Network's concept of "implementation drivers"—activities that can help move system reform principles and approaches from ideas into practice—as applied to child welfare practice models. Ten factors agencies should consider as critical to implementing and sustaining new programs and practices successfully over time are organized under three implementation drivers:

  • Leadership—(1) guiding implementation with a commitment to the practice model; (2) pacing the evolution of the implementation; and (3) being inclusive and transparent
  • Competency—(4) training managers, supervisors, staff, and stakeholders; (5) providing experience and coaching; (6) designating staff and supporting champions; and (7) aligning staff selection and evaluation systems
  • Organization—(8) evaluating progress and outcomes through quality improvement; (9) using feedback loops; and (10) revising policies and creating tools

Examples from four States that have made good progress in implementing a child welfare practice model are presented to illustrate the implementation drivers and critical factors. The article includes quotes from staff and supervisors that exemplify some of the successes and lessons learned—about training, useful tools, investment in the practice model, clarifying goals, and the value of feedback, for example—in each State's implementation experience.

To access the summer/fall 2011 issue of Child Welfare Matters, go to:

http://muskie.usm.maine.edu/helpkids/rcpdfs/cwmatters11.pdf (1.34 MB)

The NCROI Practice Model Peer Network website offers resources, State documents, and ways to connect with colleagues engaged in similar work.


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