Academic journal article Journal of Marriage and Family

Book Reviews -- Putting Families First: An Experiment in Family Preservation by John R. Schuerman, Tina L. Rzepnicki and Julia H. Littell

Academic journal article Journal of Marriage and Family

Book Reviews -- Putting Families First: An Experiment in Family Preservation by John R. Schuerman, Tina L. Rzepnicki and Julia H. Littell

Article excerpt

Putting Families First: An Experiment in Family Preservation. John R. Schuerman, Tina L. Rzepnicki, & Julia H. Littell. New York: Aldine de Gruyer. 1994. 328 pp. Hardcover ISBN 0-202-36091-1. $44.95 cloth, $24.95 paper.

In Putting Families First: An Experiment in Family Preservation, John Schuerman, Tina Rzepnicki, and Julia Littell report the findings of an ambitious multiyear study of the effectiveness of the Family First family preservation program in Illinois. Family preservation programs are intensive family-based service interventions "designed to prevent the removal of abused and neglected children from their families" (p. 3).

The first two chapters deal with issues related to the development of family preservation programs, including discussion of such topics as permanency planning and the recent increase in foster care placement. Also included is a review of recent search on the success of family preservation programs in reducing out-of-home placements and child maltreatment rates. Chapter 3 contains a description of the design of the Family First evaluation in Illinois. Data collected included descriptive information, a randomized control group experiment to determine the effects of the program on placement rates and harm to children, and a longitudinal study of the effects of the program on child and family functioning.

Chapters 4 and 5 present descriptive information on families that were served by the program and the types of service that were received. …

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