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Washington State provides funding to school districts to help underachieving students through the Learning Assistance Program (LAP). The 2013 Washington State Legislature directed the Washington State Institute for Public Policy to prepare an inventory of evidence-based and research-based effective practices, activities, and programs for use by school districts in LAP and to update the inventory each two years thereafter. This report describes the initial inventory of evidence-based and research-based practices for use in LAP.
The 2013 Legislature directed the Washington State Institute for Public Policy (WSIPP) to create, in consultation with the Department of Health and Social Services (DSHS), University of Washington Evidence-Based Practice Institute (EBPI), University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute (ADAI), and the Washington Institute for Mental Health Research and Training (WIMHRT), an inventory of evidence-based, research-based, and promising practices. The legislation also directs DSHS to use the inventory to develop a behavioral health improvement strategy and report the strategy to the governor and legislature. This report describes the inventory of evidence-based, research-based, and promising practices in adult mental health and chemical dependency services.
In 1998, Washington State voters legalized the use of medical marijuana for certain medical purposes. Very little is known about patient access to medical marijuana and other implications of the law. At the local level, some cities and counties have prohibited collective cultivation of medicinal marijuana. Most Washington residents, however, live in areas that allow collective gardens.
This report describes local regulations regarding medical marijuana.
The 2009 Legislature required the Department of Corrections (DOC) to use a risk assessment, recommended by the Washington State Institute for Public Policy (WSIPP), which has the highest predictive accuracy for recidivism.
To complete this task, WSIPP employed a systematic research approach. We reviewed the research literature on risk assessments and found five that have been tested on adult offenders in Washington. Among the five options, our review indicates that, to date, the Static Risk and Offender Needs Guide-Revised (STRONG-R) has the highest predictive accuracy of criminal recidivism.
WSIPP updated its 2007 analysis of the research evidence regarding full-day kindergarten.
Over half of Washington’s public school kindergarteners attend full-day programs, and the state is expanding funding for this option. In this report, we analyze average impacts on student outcomes from full-day kindergarten across the United States and elsewhere. We also examine whether benefits are likely to exceed costs.
To investigate, we conducted a systematic review of research by collecting all studies we could find on the topic. We screened for scientific rigor and only analyzed studies with strong research methods. We identified ten credible evaluations of full-day kindergarten’s cause-and-effect relationship with student test score outcomes. The studies estimate the relative impact of full-day in comparison with half-day programs.
Improvement in standardized test scores was the only outcome measured in the studies that we reviewed. Other outcomes of interest such as social and emotional learning and high school graduation have not been examined consistently in the research literature.
WSIPP analyzed how various approaches to early childhood education (ECE) for low-income children impact student outcomes and whether benefits exceed costs. We examined three types of programs: state and district pre-kindergarten, the federal Head Start program, and “model” programs.
To investigate, we conducted a systematic review of research by collecting all studies we could find on the topic. We screened for scientific rigor and only analyzed studies with strong research methods. We identified 49 credible evaluations of whether the three types of ECE for low-income children have a cause-and-effect relationship with student outcomes. The studies in our review measured academic as well as social and emotional development outcomes; a few studies also measured longer term outcomes including crime and teen births. To view the final report for WSIPP's 2013 legislative ECEAP assignment, click here.
Washington’s State Need Grant (SNG) program provides tuition assistance to low-income undergraduate students attending higher education institutions in the state. In the past ten years, state SNG expenditures more than doubled from $136 million in 2003 to $303 million in 2012. Last year (2012-13), about 74,000 students received an SNG (among 106,000 eligible students). This report assesses the effectiveness of the SNG program in improving enrollment and degree completion outcomes. We find that for students with the lowest family incomes, receipt of State Need Grants is associated with higher re-enrollment and completion rates. Specifically, a 25% change in the SNG award amount would result in a 2 to 4 percentage point change in student re-enrollment and a 4 to 8 percentage point change in completion rates for the lowest income students. The State Need Grant represents just one of several sources of financial aid that undergraduate students may receive. We examine the interactions between the SNG and other sources of aid and the relationship between overall aid and the student’s cost of attendance. SNG award amounts are based on a student’s family size and family income level. This report looks at how alternative awarding strategies may impact the number of students receiving a grant and the average value of those awards.
In Washington State, the juvenile courts have jurisdiction over youth under the age of 18 who are charged with committing a crime. Under certain circumstances, however, the juvenile courts are declined jurisdiction and youth are automatically sentenced as adults.
For this report, we examined whether the automatic decline law results in higher or lower offender recidivism for those who were sentenced as adults by comparing recidivism rates of youth who were automatically declined after the 1994 law with youth who would have been declined had the law existed prior to that time.