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Education and Employment Training (EET, King County) for court-involved youth

Juvenile Justice
Benefit-cost methods last updated December 2019.  Literature review updated February 2019.
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Education and Employment Training (EET) is a workforce development program aimed towards youth improvement in employment, school engagement, and appropriate use of free time. In EET King County, participants receive minimum wage for up to 20 hours of work per week, for up to 150 total hours. For youth in school, the program provides job readiness training and job placement. Youth not in school must either re-engage or earn a General Equivalency Diploma (GED). EET also provides assistance to prepare for the GED.

In the included study, participants were court-involved youth at moderate or high risk of recidivism. On average, participants received EET services for 6.3 months. In the included study, 74% of participants were youth of color and 20% were female. Both the program and comparison group youth had access to usual services, which included evidence-based programs (e.g., Functional Family Therapy and Washington State Aggression Replacement Training).

Key Terms

Court-involved youth: Youth who are processed through the juvenile justice system but who are not ordered to a period of confinement in a residential or correctional facility. This includes populations of arrested youth, diverted youth, charged youth, adjudicated youth, and youth on probation or formal supervision.

Youth in state institutions: Youth who are confined in a residential or correctional facility when they participate in the program.

Youth post-release: Youth who are returning to the community following a period of confinement in a residential or correctional facility and who participate in the program after release to the community.

BENEFIT-COST
META-ANALYSIS
CITATIONS
The estimates shown are present value, life cycle benefits and costs. All dollars are expressed in the base year chosen for this analysis (2018). The chance the benefits exceed the costs are derived from a Monte Carlo risk analysis. The details on this, as well as the economic discount rates and other relevant parameters are described in our Technical Documentation.
Benefit-Cost Summary Statistics Per Participant
Benefits to:
Taxpayers $6,939 Benefits minus costs $22,252
Participants $1,187 Benefit to cost ratio $8.41
Others $15,454 Chance the program will produce
Indirect $1,673 benefits greater than the costs 99 %
Total benefits $25,254
Net program cost ($3,002)
Benefits minus cost $22,252
1In addition to the outcomes measured in the meta-analysis table, WSIPP measures benefits and costs estimated from other outcomes associated with those reported in the evaluation literature. For example, empirical research demonstrates that high school graduation leads to reduced crime. These associated measures provide a more complete picture of the detailed costs and benefits of the program.

2“Others” includes benefits to people other than taxpayers and participants. Depending on the program, it could include reductions in crime victimization, the economic benefits from a more educated workforce, and the benefits from employer-paid health insurance.

3“Indirect benefits” includes estimates of the net changes in the value of a statistical life and net changes in the deadweight costs of taxation.
Detailed Monetary Benefit Estimates Per Participant
Benefits from changes to:1 Benefits to:
Taxpayers Participants Others2 Indirect3 Total
Crime $6,481 $0 $14,746 $3,241 $24,467
Labor market earnings associated with high school graduation $591 $1,389 $769 $0 $2,750
Costs of higher education ($133) ($202) ($61) ($67) ($463)
Adjustment for deadweight cost of program $0 $0 $0 ($1,501) ($1,501)
Totals $6,939 $1,187 $15,454 $1,673 $25,254
Detailed Annual Cost Estimates Per Participant
Annual cost Year dollars Summary
Program costs $2,776 2012 Present value of net program costs (in 2018 dollars) ($3,002)
Comparison costs $0 2012 Cost range (+ or -) 20 %
The per-participant cost of the program excludes the cost of usual services, as both the treatment and comparison group had access to usual services. The per-participant treatment group cost was estimated using the total program expenditures for Education and Employment Training EET in King County, divided by the number of youth served as reported in King County’s Children, Youth, and Young Adult Services Inventory (2012) found at https://www.kingcounty.gov/~/media/operations/DCHS/2012_KC_Children_Youth_YA_Services_Rev8_31_12.ashx.
The figures shown are estimates of the costs to implement programs in Washington. The comparison group costs reflect either no treatment or treatment as usual, depending on how effect sizes were calculated in the meta-analysis. The cost range reported above reflects potential variation or uncertainty in the cost estimate; more detail can be found in our Technical Documentation.
Estimated Cumulative Net Benefits Over Time (Non-Discounted Dollars)
The graph above illustrates the estimated cumulative net benefits per-participant for the first fifty years beyond the initial investment in the program. We present these cash flows in non-discounted dollars to simplify the “break-even” point from a budgeting perspective. If the dollars are negative (bars below $0 line), the cumulative benefits do not outweigh the cost of the program up to that point in time. The program breaks even when the dollars reach $0. At this point, the total benefits to participants, taxpayers, and others, are equal to the cost of the program. If the dollars are above $0, the benefits of the program exceed the initial investment.

Meta-analysis is a statistical method to combine the results from separate studies on a program, policy, or topic in order to estimate its effect on an outcome. WSIPP systematically evaluates all credible evaluations we can locate on each topic. The outcomes measured are the types of program impacts that were measured in the research literature (for example, crime or educational attainment). Treatment N represents the total number of individuals or units in the treatment group across the included studies.

An effect size (ES) is a standard metric that summarizes the degree to which a program or policy affects a measured outcome. If the effect size is positive, the outcome increases. If the effect size is negative, the outcome decreases.

Adjusted effect sizes are used to calculate the benefits from our benefit cost model. WSIPP may adjust effect sizes based on methodological characteristics of the study. For example, we may adjust effect sizes when a study has a weak research design or when the program developer is involved in the research. The magnitude of these adjustments varies depending on the topic area.

WSIPP may also adjust the second ES measurement. Research shows the magnitude of some effect sizes decrease over time. For those effect sizes, we estimate outcome-based adjustments which we apply between the first time ES is estimated and the second time ES is estimated. We also report the unadjusted effect size to show the effect sizes before any adjustments have been made. More details about these adjustments can be found in our Technical Documentation.

Meta-Analysis of Program Effects
Outcomes measured Treatment age No. of effect sizes Treatment N Adjusted effect sizes(ES) and standard errors(SE) used in the benefit - cost analysis Unadjusted effect size (random effects model)
First time ES is estimated Second time ES is estimated
ES SE Age ES SE Age ES p-value
Crime 17 1 266 -0.292 0.106 18 -0.292 0.106 26 -0.292 0.006

Citations Used in the Meta-Analysis

Miller, M., Fumia, D., & He, L. (2015). The King County Education and Employment Training (EET) Program: Outcome evaluation and benefit-cost analysis. (Doc. No. 15-12-3901). Olympia: Washington State Institute for Public Policy.