Evaluation and monitoring

Evaluation and monitoring

Guidance to help youth sector prove its worth unveiled

Moves to boost investment in youth work have taken a step forward with the publication of a guide to help the sector measure outcomes. Think-tank The Young Foundation has created the document to help providers demonstrate evidence of their impact, by creating standardised measurements across young people's services. It forms part of the work of the government-funded Catalyst consortium, which is charged with helping the youth sector adapt to the changing policy environment. Bethia McNeil, co-author of the document at The Young Foundation, said: "The framework offers a common language for talking coherently and consistently about social and emotional capabilities and will increase providers', funders' and commissioners' confidence about value for money. "At a time when services that most explicitly focus on supporting personal and social development are under unprecedented financial pressure, the framework is a vital step in helping services to make their case and demonstrate their value."  http://www.cypnow.co.uk/digital_assets/Framework_of_Outcomes_for_Young_People_July_2012.pdf

Local Area Interactive Tool (LAIT)

The Department for Education has developed the Local Area Interactive Tool (LAIT) to provide easy access to a wide range of data related to children and young people sourced from various departments across government. It acts as a single central evidence base that helps support the Accountability Framework and Transparency Agenda.
The LAIT is an Excel-based tool that provides user-friendly access to a system that brings together a consistent set of local authority (LA) performance and data items including:
• inspectorate judgments
• contextual information about individual LAs, including number and type of schools, social deprivation factors
• pupil attainment, health, looked-after children, post-16, etc.
The LAIT includes baseline and time-series data for more than 180 different data items allowing comparisons to be made both over time and, for benchmarking purposes, against national, regional and statistical neighbour groups. The information is presented in interactive tables and charts with the LA's rank and quartile position included to indicate performance in the national context. The LAIT data is continuously updated when new data is released so that users always have access to the very latest information. Visit the website at:
http://www.education.gov.uk/childrenandyoungpeople/strategy/research/lait/a0070240/local-area-interactive-tool-lait

Developing and using outcomes monitoring tools

From Charities Evaluation Services, 'Assessing Change: Developing and using outcomes monitoring tools'. This guide is a practical handbook to help you identify and develop ways to collect information on the outcomes of your work, that is, to track the difference your work is making. It takes you through the process of deciding whether to design your own monitoring tools or to use one of the many tools that are already available. This guide will help you:
• assess the range of options available
• understand the different methods of data collection available and
• decide on the methods most appropriate to your work and your
• information needs
• develop outcomes monitoring tools based on your outcome indicators.
http://www.ces-vol.org.uk/downloads/assessingchange-740-748.pdf