If you have implemented an evidence-based program correctly, measured consistently, and the problem still exists, you probably need an evaluation to determine why the program has failed to meet its goal(s). A thorough evaluation will separate the program’s impact from external factors. You should consider the following potential problems with a failed evidence-based program:
- Did something happen in the community independent of the program that coincided with the program to cause an increase in juvenile crime? Could program youth have been affected by these events?
- Were program performance measures specified correctly? For example, was the Mentor/Youth Relationship Scale used by Darcy a good measure to indicate whether program youth developed positive relationships with adult role models?
- Have you expected to see results too soon?
Responses to these questions might be used to modify the program plan and improve program outcomes.