Amid keen interest in helping students, young adults, and low-wage workers build the skills necessary to succeed in a technologically advanced economy, MDRC is studying a range of programs that feature employer involvement, such as career pathways from high school into college and the workforce, work-based learning, apprenticeships, and sectoral training.
Current Policy, Prominent Programs, and Evidence
This paper reviews the available evidence supporting various types of career and technical education programs, touching on both the amount of evidence available in each area and its level of rigor.
Findings from the Changing Attitudes and Motivation in Parolees Pilot Study
A training program for parole officers in Dallas, Denver, and Des Moines sought to address the persistently high recidivism rates among individuals leaving prison. This study’s results show that officers generally already knew many of the curriculum’s concepts, and changes to their practices were limited.
MDRC is learning what programs work best to prevent at-risk youth from getting in trouble, help juvenile offenders turn their lives around, and give reentering prisoners the chance to get a foothold in the labor market and reduce their chances of rearrest.
The 700,000 incarcerated prisoners released each year face considerable obstacles to successfully reintegrating into their communities, and many return to prison. While state and federal agencies have mounted ambitious prisoner reentry initiatives, this policy memo from our “Looking Forward” series explains that there is still much to learn about what works.
Final Results of the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project and Selected Sites from the Employment Retention and Advancement Project
42-Month Impacts from the Kansas and Missouri Sites of the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project
Two Early Head Start programs were enhanced with formalized services to proactively address parents’ employment, educational, and self-sufficiency needs. A random assignment evaluation finds limited impacts for the full sample but some positive effects on employment and earnings for families who had an infant or who were expecting a child at the outset of the study.
Eighteen-Month Impacts from the Kansas and Missouri Sites of the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project
The report offers implementation and early impact findings from a random assignment evaluation of two Early Head Start programs that were enhanced with formalized services to proactively address parents’ employment, educational, and self-sufficiency needs.
An Introduction to the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project
This demonstration is evaluating four diverse strategies designed to improve employment and other outcomes for low-income parents and others who face serious barriers to employment.