PbS Reentry Measurement Standards

Recognizing the need to measure and better understand what works to keep youths on the path to successful adulthood when involved in the juvenile justice system, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) launched the Juvenile Justice Reentry Measurement Standards project. The project’s goal is to provide the field with a set of national standards aligned with adolescent development research to measure the effectiveness of reentry services and quantify the path to achieve positive youth outcomes when youths return to their families and communities.

OJJDP selected the Performance-based Standards Learning Institute (PbS), the developers of the successful PbS standards and continuous improvement model for facilities and residential programs, to lead the project. PbS and its partners, the Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators (CJCA) and the Vera Institute of Justice will combine their expertise to develop a set of national measurement standards to assess the effectiveness of reentry services provided from the time a youth is confined through transition and post-release supervision.

The standards will identify interim measures of progress and practices to better understand the link to longer-term measures of positive youth development and reoffending. The new standards will consider both what services are being delivered and how they are being delivered. The standards will be based on extensive research of reentry practices, implementation science, cost effectiveness and adolescent development. The standards will be developed with significant leadership and contribution from the field and employ a continuous feedback loop to ensure the standards are meaningful and can be easily adopted. The final standards model will identify data and outcome measures to identify and develop effective reentry services that continue to meet the demand for public safety and enhance youths’ positive development.

PbS will use a strategy similar to what was used to create and implement PbS standards to develop the new reentry measurement standards:

  • The first 12-18 months will be spent conducting an extensive review of the literature and research and a scan of existing reentry services, practices and tools and youth outcomes indicating the services’ impact. Experts and practitioners will be consulted to verify and contextualize the findings and help translate them into the first draft set of standards. The draft will be presented formally to the Technical Working Group, a panel of researchers, agency leaders and reentry experts, for comments and feedback.
  • The standards will be revised and pilot tested for the next 10-12 months across the country. Pilot testing results will be incorporated into the standards iteratively PbS will seek continually feedback from leaders, staff, youths, families, OJJDP and the Technical Working Group.
  • The final product will be delivered to OJJDP in three years and will include recommendations for a scalable, flexible and transferable data collection platform.

As part of the field scan, PbS is seeking examples of the reentry services, practices and tools currently being used and considered to be working. Please send your recommendations of services, practices and tools to include in the field scan to: reentry@pbstandards.org.