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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.
The 2013 Legislature directed the Washington State Institute for Public Policy (WSIPP) to (1) develop definitions for “evidence-based” and “research-based” and (2) create an inventory of evidence-based and research-based programs to be used by the Department of Corrections.
This report contains WSIPP’s definitions as well as an inventory of evidence-based and research-based programs for adult corrections.
The Washington State Institute for Public Policy is directed to conduct a benefit-cost analysis of the implementation of I-502, which legalizes recreational cannabis use for adults within the state. As a preliminary step, we analyzed population-level data to begin monitoring four key indicators of cannabis use prior to implementation.
We used data from the 2002 to 2011 administrations of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health to examine trends in the prevalence of current cannabis use, lifetime cannabis use, age of initiation, and cannabis abuse or dependency. We examined these trends separately for youth and adults in Washington, and also provide estimates for Colorado (the other state that has legalized recreational cannabis use) and the rest of the United States (US).
Examining trends in this manner will allow us to monitor whether the implementation of I-502 appears to affect these key indicators of marijuana use over time. Although more sophisticated analyses will be required for us to evaluate the policy, these initial trends provide a baseline to compare future data against. The prevalence of cannabis use in the past 30 days—a key indicator of the proportion of people who are current cannabis users—appears to be on the rise in recent years among both youth and adults in Washington, Colorado, and the US. The other indicators of use appear to be relatively stable or increasing slightly over time. In general, the estimates from Washington are slightly higher than the US and slightly lower than Colorado.
We will continue to monitor these trends over time within the context of our larger benefit-cost analysis to examine whether the new policy appears to affect marijuana use rates within the state.
Since the 1990s, the Washington State legislature has directed the Washington State Institute for Public Policy to identify policies with an “evidence-based” track record of improving certain public policy outcomes. Outcomes of interest have included, among others, education, child welfare, crime, and mental health.
This report updates and extends WSIPP’s list of well-researched policies that reduce crime. We display our current tabulation of evidence-based prevention, juvenile justice, and adult corrections programs, and we include our initial reviews of prison sentencing and policing.
As with our previous lists, we find that a number of public policies can reduce crime and are likely to have benefits that exceed costs. We also find credible evidence that some policies do not reduce crime and are likely to have costs that exceed benefits. The legislature has previously used this type of information to craft policy and budget bills. This updated list is designed to help with subsequent budgets and policy legislation.
The Washington State Institute for Public Policy (WSIPP) was directed by the 2013 Legislature to prepare an inventory of evidence-based, research-based, and promising practices for prevention and intervention services for adult behavioral health. This brief report presents our preliminary findings on collaborative primary care for depression and anxiety. Final results for collaborative care will be published in May 2014.
Washington State Legislature passed a bill directing the Washington State Institute for Public Policy to 1) review the research literature on treatment for domestic violence offenders and other interventions effective at reducing recidivism; 2) survey states’ laws regarding domestic violence treatment for offenders; and 3) analyze recidivism rates of domestic violence offenders in Washington. Findings were published earlier this year on the first two tasks. In this report, we complete the legislative assignment and describe the recidivism rates of domestic violence offenders in Washington.