From left to right: Fawzi Mulki, CTG graduate assistant, Jana Hrdinova, CTG program associate, Meghan Cook, CTG program manager, William Travis, deputy commissioner of NYS OCFS, Natalie Helbig, CTG program associate, and Bahadir Akcam, CTG graduate assistant.
CTG and the New York State Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) were presented with the 2008 Best Practices Award in Management by the NYS Forum at their annual meeting. The award highlighted the collaborative effort of a research-practice partnership that brought together CTG with OCFS and local departments of social services to learn about how mobile technologies can be used in child protective services (CPS) work in New York State.
This award was the result of a pilot program that was aimed at evaluating whether having access to mobile technology would provide more opportunities to do traditional office work while in the field and whether such mobile devices facilitated increased efficiency and effectiveness in CPS investigations. In three successive efforts starting in 2006, NYS OCFS, the Local Departments of Social Services (LDSS), and CTG developed an evaluation strategy to provide learning and systematic feedback to inform decision-making as well as to understand the organizational and policy issues related to the adoption of mobile technologies. One goal of the assessment was to provide input into the overall implementation and deployment strategies of the mobile technology initiatives. Information about mobility and use and general satisfaction were used to inform mid-course and overall decision-making. Since 2006, 26 districts have received laptops for over 750 NYS CPS caseworkers.
For the full project description of the award, go to the NYS Forum’s Web site. Additional information on the project and resulting reports can be found at: https://www.ctg.albany.edu/projects/mobile.