This application, Prevention Services for Early Drug Abuse Risk: Teachers Implement, Sustain, Adapt, focuses on the educational sector, a normative setting for children and an important delivery system for prevention programs. A number of school-based preventive interventions directed at aggressive, disruptive behavior, a confirmed antecedent risk factor for drug abuse and violence, have shown both short- and long- term impact in randomized field trials. A challenge is that little is known about how to move these programs into general practice while maintaining high quality fidelity of implementation. The proposed grant will address several challenges for Type 2 Translational research including the need to understand multi-level factors influencing program implementation and sustainability;to understand program adaptation and the influence on program impact;and for models of researcher/community institution partnership. We will maximize federal funds by scaffolding the proposed work onto an already funded grant, Professional Development to Support and Sustain a Classroom Behavior Management Strategy (Poduska, PI), a four-year $3 million grant funded by the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education (IES). The IES-funded trial is a randomized field trial designed to test the Good Behavior Game (GBG), a classroom-based behavior management strategy, under two conditions of professional development and compared to a control condition. The purpose of the IES trial is to understand the level of professional development required for a range of first grade teachers to learn, implement, and sustain GBG over the course of two years. GBG, aimed at early aggressive, disruptive behavior, a confirmed early antecedent risk factor for drug use and abuse, is one of the few drug prevention programs that have shown positive impact from elementary school to young adulthood on drug use and other public health outcomes. In this application, we request funds to extend the IES-funded trial in three distinct ways. First, the IES-funded trial follows teachers for two school years: the year teachers are trained and first use GBG termed the Implementation Stage, and the year after training and support have been withdrawn termed the Sustainability Stage. We propose to follow teachers for an additional year of Sustainability to examine teacher practices and the support provided to teachers under natural conditions for two years. Second, the measurement framework of the IES-funded trial is primarily focused on effectiveness with measurement of teacher practices of classroom behavior management and student outcomes. We propose to extend the measurement framework to include a set of factors hypothesized to enhance or impede program implementation and sustainability, including characteristics of the program, the support system, the teacher, and the school/principal. Third, we propose to study the adaptations and revisions teachers make to GBG practice and the subsequent impact on GBG effectiveness.
This application focuses on the next stage of drug prevention services research or Type 2 Translational Research aimed at improving the implementation and dissemination of evidence- based drug abuse prevention programs in schools. The proposed grant will address several challenges including the need to understand multi-level factors influencing program implementation and sustainability;to understand program adaptation and the influence on program impact;and for models of researcher/community institution partnership.
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