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J Sch Health. 2003 May;73(5):181-5.

The principles of effectiveness: early awareness and plans for implementation in a national sample of public schools and their districts.

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  • 1RTI International, PO Box 12194, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA. apsr@rti.org


The US Department of Education's Principles of Effectiveness require recipients of Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Community Act funds to: a) base drug and violence prevention programs on needs assessment data, b) develop measurable program goals and objectives, c) implement programs with research evidence of effectiveness, and d) periodically evaluate programs relative to their goals and objectives. This paper reports the extent of awareness of the Principles of Effectiveness and plans for their implementation among public school districts and schools in the United States in the year following their announcement. Results showed a greater percentage of public school districts than individual schools knew about the principles and planned for implementation, but baseline levels of awareness for both districts and schools were relatively low. Schools were more likely to know about the principles when their associated school district also knew. Results suggest a need for greater communication about the principles to school districts, and in turn, a need for greater communication between district and school-level substance use prevention staff.

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