The group care quality standards assessment: A framework for assessment, quality improvement, and effectiveness

Shamra Boel-Studt, Jonathan C. Huefner, Hui Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Concerns about the quality of residential care for children and youth are longstanding. These concerns prompted a Florida-based initiative aimed at transforming residential care through the integration of research-informed practice standards, on-going assessment, and continuous quality improvement. The initiative resulted in the development of the Group Care Quality Standards and the Group Care Quality Standards Assessment (GCQSA) as mechanisms for guiding transformation efforts. In this article, we elaborate on the conceptual and implementation frameworks guiding the development and efforts to scale up the GCQSA throughout Florida. We begin by summarizing empirical sources that informed the guiding frameworks. Next, we describe the project phases highlighting the aims, methods and summarizing results where relevant. The aim of this article is to offer a working blue print to guide the adaptation of quality initiatives in other child welfare organizations or jurisdictions while taking into consideration the fit of such initiatives within the service environment and the complexities of system-wide change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104425
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
StatePublished - Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Child welfare
  • Performance measures
  • Quality improvement
  • Quality standards
  • Residential group care
  • Therapeutic residential care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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