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Program Profile: Family-School Partnership Intervention to Reduce Risk of Substance Use

Evidence Rating: Promising - One study Promising - One study

Date: This profile was posted on February 22, 2016

Program Summary

The program was a universal, preventive intervention for first-grade students, designed to reduce the risk for substance use by improving teachers' and parents' communication and behavior-management skills. The program is rated Promising. Approximately 6 to 7 years after the end of the program, participants were significantly less likely to have initiated tobacco use, compared with non-participants. The program had no impact on alcohol, marijuana, inhalant, or other drug use.

Program Description

Program Goals
The Family-School Partnership Intervention to Reduce Risk of Substance Use (FSP) was a universal, first-grade preventive intervention designed to reduce students’ risk for later drug involvement by addressing students’ poor achievement, aggressive and shy behavior, and concentration problems, which are known risk behaviors for later substance use (Storr et al. 2002). The intervention was designed to improve teachers’ and parents’ teaching and behavior-management skills, and parent-teacher communication.  
 
Program Components
FSP had three main components: 1) The Parents on Your Side 3-day training on parent-teacher communication and partnership building for teachers and school staff, with follow-up supervisory visits and an explicit training manual with videotape training aids; 2) weekly home-school learning and communication activities; and 3) a series of nine parent workshops. The basis of the parent workshops was the Parents and Children series, a videotape-modeling group discussion program, developed by Webster-Stratton (1984). The first-grade teacher and school psychologist or social worker ran the program, which included sessions on effective praise, play, limit setting, time-out versus spanking, and problem solving. A “Warm Line” was set up in each school to enhance parent-school communication regarding academic and behavior-management issues.
 
Program Theory
The program was based on the theory that modifying early characteristics, conditions, and processes could render a more health-promoting set of behaviors later in life and reduce the risk for substance use, depression, and antisocial behavior (Kellam and Rebok 1992; Patterson et al. 1992).

Evaluation Outcomes

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The findings from the studies by Storr and colleagues (2002) and Furr-Holden and colleagues (2004) showed a significant reduction in the risk of smoking initiation for students in the Family-School Partnership Intervention (FSP), compared with students in the control group. While the studies found no significant difference between the groups in the outcomes related to early alcohol or other drug use, the preponderance of the evidence suggests the program had an overall positive impact on youth.
 
Study 1
Risk of Smoking Initiation
Storr and colleagues (2002) found a significant, small reduction in the risk of smoking initiation for students in the Family-School Partnership Intervention (FSP) treatment group, compared with students in the control group.
 
Study 2
Furr-Holden and colleagues (2004) had mixed findings regarding early onset of substance use among sixth through eighth graders who participated in the FSP program, compared with students in the control group. The program had positive effects on early onset of tobacco; students who participated in the FSP program were less likely to have initiated tobacco use by the end of the eighth grade. But there were no effects on early onset of alcohol use without parental permission, marijuana use, or use of inhalants and other illegal drugs (cocaine, crack, or heroin).
 
Early Onset Tobacco
FSP had a small, significant effect on early onset tobacco use, as students in the treatment group were less likely than those in the control group to have initiated tobacco use by the end of the eighth grade.
 
Early Onset Alcohol without Parent’s Permission
There was no significant difference in early onset of alcohol use without parent’s permission between the treatment and control groups.
 
Early Onset Marijuana
There was no significant difference in early onset of marijuana use between the treatment and control groups.
 
Early Onset Inhalants
There was no significant difference in early onset of inhalant use between the treatment and control groups.
 
Early Onset Other Illegal Drug Use
There was no significant difference in early onset of other illegal drug use (cocaine powder, crack, or heroin) between the treatment and control groups.
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Evaluation Methodology

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Study 1
Storr and colleagues (2002) used a sample of 678 urban first graders and their families from nine elementary schools, which were located mostly in western Baltimore, Maryland. A randomized block design was employed, with schools serving as the blocking factor. Three first-grade classrooms in each of the nine elementary schools were randomly assigned to one of the two intervention conditions (Classroom Centered Intervention [CCI] or Family–School Partnership [FSP]) or to a control condition (that did not receive any special prevention program). Teachers and children were randomly assigned to intervention conditions. The interventions were limited to first-grade students. Of the 678 students randomized, 219 were assigned to control conditions, 230 were assigned to CCI classrooms, and 229 were assigned to FSP classrooms. Of these 678 children, 53 percent were male, 86 percent were African American, and 14 percent were white. Children receiving free or reduced lunch made up 62 percent of the sample. At entrance into first grade, the children ranged in age from 5.3 to 7.7 years, with a mean age of 5.7 years. Compared with students in the CCI and FSP interventions, children in the control group were somewhat less likely to be male and to be African American, and somewhat more likely to come from two-parent households. In addition, the teacher ratings of problem behavior were modestly higher for children in the CCI group.
 
The primary outcome of interest was initiation of tobacco use. Youth self-reported use of tobacco was assessed 6 years after the end of the intervention year using the audio computer-assisted self-interview (ACASI) when the students were, on average, 12 years old. Parents/caregivers completed hour-long telephone interviews in the fall of first grade. Teachers rated the children’s adequacy of performance on core classroom tasks, using the Teacher Observation of Classroom Adaptation-Revised (TOCA-R) scale. Cox regression models were used to estimate the impact of the intervention on the risk of starting to smoke. Statistical adjustments were made for the between-group baseline differences in age, race, parental monitoring and supervision, family tobacco use, and teacher rating of the TOCA-R score.
 
Study 2
Furr-Holden and colleagues (2004) used the same sample as Study 1 (Storr et al. 2002). Of the 678 students in the original sample, approximately 84 percent (N=566) participated in the follow-up assessment 5, 6, and 7 years after randomization (sixth, seventh, or eighth grade).
 
At follow up, students used ACASI methods to self-report on drug involvement, specifically related to early onset (i.e., prior to mid-adolescence) initiation of tobacco, alcoholic beverages, inhalants (e.g., glue and gases), marijuana, or other illegal drugs, including cocaine and heroin. The data was analyzed using regression models and generalized estimating equations.
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Cost

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There is no cost information available for this program.
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Implementation Information

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Teachers, school psychologists, and social workers received 60 hours of FSP training to ensure fidelity to the Family-School Partnership (FSP) model. Observations of parent workshops (either live or audiotaped) helped determine the extent to which the program was being delivered as intended (Storr et al. 2002).
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Other Information

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Please note: CrimeSolutions.gov reviewers reviewed multiple studies for this program. The reviewers found that the evidence for positive program outcomes was not consistent in all studies reviewed. Therefore, the single study icon is used. Promising programs have some evidence indicating they achieve their intended outcomes. Additional research is recommended.
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Evidence-Base (Studies Reviewed)

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These sources were used in the development of the program profile:

Study 1
Storr, Carla L., Nicholas S. Ialongo, Sheppard G. Kellam, and James C. Anthony 2002. “A Randomized Controlled Trial of Two Primary School Intervention Strategies to Prevent Early Onset Tobacco Smoking.” Drug and Alcohol Dependence 66:51–60.

Study 2
Furr–Holden, C. Debra, Nicholas S. Ialongo, James C. Anthony, Hanno Petras, and Sheppard G. Kellam. 2004. “Developmentally Inspired Drug Prevention: Middle School Outcomes in a School-Based Randomized Prevention Trial.” Drug and Alcohol Dependence 73:149–58.
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Additional References

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These sources were used in the development of the program profile:

Kellam, Sheppard G., and George W. Rebok. 1992. “Building Developmental and Etiological Theory through Epidemiologically Based Preventive and Intervention Trials.” In J. McCord and R.E. Tremblay (eds.). Preventing Antisocial Behavior: Interventions From Birth Through Adolescence. New York: The Guilford Press, pp. 162–95.

Patterson, Gerald R., John Reid, and Thomas Dishion. 1992. A Social Learning Approach: IV. Antisocial Boys. Eugene, Ore: Castalia.

Webster-Stratton, Carolyn. 1984. “Randomized Trial of Two Parent-Training Programs for Families with Conduct Disordered Children.” Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 52:666-78.
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Program Snapshot

Age: 5 - 7

Gender: Both

Race/Ethnicity: Black, White, Other

Geography: Urban

Setting (Delivery): School

Program Type: Academic Skills Enhancement, Classroom Curricula, Parent Training, School/Classroom Environment, Alcohol and Drug Prevention

Targeted Population: Families

Current Program Status: Not Active

Listed by Other Directories: Model Programs Guide