COLORADO DIVISION OF YOUTH SERVICES PERFORMANCE EVALUATION
For the Colorado Department of Human Services’ Division of Youth Services (DYS), DSG is conducting a performance evaluation of Colorado’s 10 state-run, secure juvenile residential facilities.
The assessment is concentrating on identifying the most important strengths, issues, and opportunities for improvement in the priority policy and practice areas identified by DYS, based on structured surveys, interviews, document review, and policy analysis. Throughout the assessment, DSG is working closely with DYS staff and a DSG project advisory group of distinguished experts in juvenile justice. As part of the assessment, DSG is conducting a rigorous review of the literature to identify and synthesize policies, practices, and authoritative research results that can shed light on how DYS can strengthen its juvenile justice policies and practices in the priority topic areas.
DSG is identifying other states and juvenile justice facilities where best practices are being implemented. We will compare qualitative and quantitative data about Colorado’s juvenile justice policies and practices with data about comparable policies and practices in the selected states. In a final report, DSG will a) determine the extent to which DYS policies have been adequately framed, shared, understood, and followed, b) identify the facility processes and youth outcomes that have resulted; and c) identify opportunities for improvement for the Colorado juvenile justice system and facilities. We also will present findings for DYS and others in the executive and legislative branches of the State of Colorado.