Strategies

Policies and programs that work

67 Strategies
Clear all

Active recess

Establish a break from the school day, typically before lunch, that involves planned, inclusive, actively supervised games or activities; also called semi-structured, or structured recess
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Adult vocational training

Support acquisition of job-specific skills through education, certification programs, or on-the-job training, often with personal development resources and other supports
Scientifically Supported
  • Employment

Alcohol brief interventions

Provide information and increase motivation to change or prevent problematic alcohol consumption in a short session; also called alcohol screening & brief intervention
Scientifically Supported
  • Alcohol and Drug Use

Alternative high schools for at-risk students

Provide educational and social services in an alternative setting for students at-risk of dropping out of traditional high schools
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Attendance interventions for chronically absent students

Support interventions that provide chronically absent students with resources to improve self-esteem, social skills, etc. and address familial and school-related factors that can contribute to poor attendance
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Ban the Box

Prohibit criminal history questions on job applications and postpone background checks
Mixed Evidence
  • Employment

Behavioral interventions to prevent HIV and other STIs

Use individual, group, and community-level interventions to provide education, support, and training that can affect social norms about HIV and other STIs
Scientifically Supported
  • Sexual Activity

Car seat incentive & education programs

Educate parents and caregivers about proper use of car seats and reward parents and/or children for correct use
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Career & technical education for high school graduation

Provide career and technical education (CTE) as an integrated part of an academic curriculum for students at risk of dropping out of high school; also called vocational training
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Career Academies

Establish small learning communities in high schools focused on fields such as health care, finance, technology, communications, or public service
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Charter schools

Establish publicly financed schools that are not subject to many of the regulations that govern traditional public schools, such as staffing, curriculum, and budgeting requirements.
Mixed Evidence
  • Education

Chicago Child-Parent Centers

Provide preschool education and comprehensive support to low income families, including small classes, student meals, and home visits with referrals for social service support as needed
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Child bicycle helmet promotion programs

Promote child bicycle helmet use via bicycle safety education, media campaigns, or provision of free or subsidized helmets
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

College access programs

Help underrepresented students prepare academically for college, complete applications, and enroll, especially first generation applicants and students from low income families
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Competitive pricing for healthy foods

Assign higher costs to non-nutritious foods than nutritious foods via incentives, subsidies, or price discounts for healthy foods and beverages or disincentives or price increases for unhealthy choices
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Comprehensive risk reduction sexual education

Provide information about contraception and protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in classroom or community settings
Scientifically Supported
  • Sexual Activity

Condom availability programs

Provide condoms free of charge or at a reduced cost in community and school-based settings
Scientifically Supported
  • Sexual Activity

Conservation tillage practices

Encourage methods of soil cultivation that keep at least one-third of cultivated soil covered with the previous year’s crop residue (e.g., mulch till, ridge till, strip till, or no-till)
Scientifically Supported
  • Air and Water Quality

Cultural competence training for health care professionals

Increase health care providers’ skills and knowledge to understand and respond to cultural differences, value diversity, etc. via factual information, skills training, and other efforts
Scientifically Supported
  • Quality of Care

Dropout prevention programs

Provide supports such as mentoring, counseling, or vocational training, or undertake school environment changes to help students complete high school
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Dropout prevention programs for teen mothers

Provide teen mothers with services such as remedial education, vocational training, case management, health care, child care, and transportation assistance to support high school completion
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Early Head Start (EHS)

Provide child care, parent education, physical health and mental health services, and other family supports to pregnant women and parents with low incomes and children aged 0 to 3
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Families and Schools Together

Convene small groups of families for facilitated weekly meetings that include a family meal, structured activities, parent support time, and parent-child play therapy
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Full-day kindergarten

Offer kindergarten programs for 4 to 6-year-old children, five days per week for at least five hours per day
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Functional Family Therapy (FFT)

Introduce a short-term family-based intervention therapy focused on strengths, protective factors and risk factors for youth with delinquency, violence, or substance abuse problems, and their families
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Health career recruitment for minority students

Recruit and train underrepresented minority (URM) students for careers in health fields via information about health careers, classes, practicum experiences, advising about college or medical school admissions, etc.
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Incredible Years

Support young children who exhibit or are at risk for behavioral problems with interpersonal relationship training and parents and teachers who are trained to meet their needs
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Integrated pest management for indoor use

Support a four-tiered approach to indoor pest control that minimizes potential hazards to people, property, and the environment
Scientifically Supported
  • Housing and Transit

Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) in middle schools

Emphasize high expectations for all students, parent and student commitment, empowered principals, and regular student assessments that inform continuous improvement in a lengthened school-year and school-day
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Mentoring programs: delinquency

Enlist mentors to develop relationships and spend time individually with at-risk mentees for an extended period; mentors have greater knowledge, skills, etc. than mentees
Scientifically Supported
  • Alcohol and Drug Use
  • Community Safety

Mentoring programs for high school graduation

Establish programs that connect at-risk students with trained adult volunteers who provide ongoing guidance for academic and personal challenges
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Multi-component obesity prevention interventions

Combine educational, environmental, and behavioral activities that increase physical activity and improve nutrition (e.g., nutrition education, aerobic/strength training, dietary prescriptions, etc.) in various settings
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Multi-component school-based obesity prevention interventions

Deliver educational, behavioral, environmental, and other obesity prevention efforts (e.g., education classes, enhanced physical education, healthy food promotion, family outreach, etc.) in schools
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

No Excuses charter school model

Focus heavily on reading and math achievement, enforce high behavioral expectations through a formal discipline system, lengthen instructional time, and increase feedback on teacher performance
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Nutrient management plans

Support site-specific plans for crop production that match nutrient applications to crop needs, typically with agricultural best management practices
Scientifically Supported
  • Air and Water Quality

Outdoor experiential education & wilderness therapy

Support outdoor pursuits that emphasize inter- and intra-personal growth through overcoming obstacles (e.g., challenge courses, wilderness excursions, etc.)
Scientifically Supported
  • Family and Social Support

Physically active classrooms

Incorporate classroom-based physical activities, such as classroom energizers, into academic lessons or as a break, usually for elementary students
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Places for physical activity

Modify local environments to support physical activity, increase access to new or existing facilities for physical activity, or build new facilities
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Preschool education programs

Provide center-based programs that support cognitive and social-emotional growth among children who are not old enough to enter formal schooling
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Preschool programs with family support services

Provide center-based programs that support cognitive and social-emotional growth among young children from low income families, with supports such as home visiting or parental skills training
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Publicly-funded pre-kindergarten programs

Provide publicly-funded pre-kindergarten (pre-K) education to 3- and 4-year-olds, through large-scale or universal efforts
Scientifically Supported
  • Education

Rural training in medical education

Expand medical school training and learning experiences focused on the skills necessary to practice successfully in rural areas
Scientifically Supported
  • Access to Care

Safe Routes to Schools

Promote walking and biking to school through education, incentives, and environmental changes; often called SRTS
Scientifically Supported
  • Housing and Transit
  • Diet and Exercise