Research & Data

PROMOTING DATA-DRIVEN PUBLIC POLICIES

The Center for Social Measurement and Evaluation (CSME) supports the research and evaluation efforts across all of CHILDREN AT RISK’s issue areas. 

Center for Social Measurement and Evaluation

The Center for Social Measurement and Evaluation (CSME) supports the research and evaluation efforts across all of CHILDREN AT RISK’s primary issue areas, centers, and policy initiatives.  CSME produces data tools to empower individuals with the information they need to drive and inform policy change.

Data-Driven Community Advocacy Tools

CSME designs and disseminates data-based research tools including:

  • Annual School Rankings
  • School data for parents through TexasSchoolGuide.org
  • Early education data and interactive maps

Research & Evaluation

CSME assesses the impact of policies and programs, resulting in evaluations including:

  • Nonprofit program evaluation
  • Corporate social investment reports
  • Community health needs assessments
  • Fiscal evaluations

Publications 

CSME produces research-oriented publications including:

  • Growing Up in Houston
  • Growing Up in North Texas
  • The Journal of Applied Research on Children
  • The Journal of Family Strengths

Our Latest Research & Data Analysis

March Round-Up: Advocates in Action

Advocates in Action As the 87th Texas Legislative Session heats up, Children at Risk advocates are hard at work supporting and drawing attention to good bills for kids. So far this session, Children at Risk has hosted three advocacy days and virtual rallies, registered support for legislation 29 times, submitted written testimony 13 times, and testified in person 13 times. Click the pictures...

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COVID-19 Related Child Care Closures

Child care centers, already some of the most economically vulnerable businesses in Texas, provide an essential service to working families and critical early educaation for young children. Throughout the pandemic, permanent, temporary, and extended closures have left thousands of Texan families without access to reliable child care. Before COVID-19, child care was in short supply and cost more...

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2021 Kroger School Food Rankings

Across Texas, over 3 million students from low-income households qualify for free or reduced-price school meals through federal programs, such as the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program.  For many of these children, meals eaten at school are the only substantial meals they receive during the day. The ongoing global pandemic further illuminates the critical role school...

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Chronic Absenteeism In Texas

Before the pandemic, Texas had a problem with chronic absenteeism in its schools. Statewide, chronic absenteeism averages at 12.5% pre-COVID and varies dramatically by region. More than 740,000 students missed at least one-tenth of their instruction in 2019. The pandemic has likely exacerbated chronic absenteeism as more students face new challenges and educational disruptions. Chronic...

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Growing Up In Houston: Assessing the Quality of Life of Our Children

In partnership with the United Way of Greater Houston, JPMorgan Chase & Co., CHILDREN AT RISK is excited to share the 2021-2022 edition of Growing Up in Houston: Assessing the Quality of Life of Our Children. The goal of the GUIH project is three-fold: to provide stakeholders in our children’s future with a tool to help identify the most strategic and pressing areas for intervention; to...

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Access to Affordable High-Quality Child Care is Scarce

By Kaeleigh Hernandez, Early Childhood Education and Sara Moran, Center for Social Measurement and Evaluation  (Note: The analyses in this post uses data on child care centers from September 2019) Across Texas, nearly half of all child care providers accept subsidies - around 8,000 licensed child care centers and homes. However, many parents that qualify for subsidy care, have limited options of...

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Investment & Innovation: Increasing Access to Quality, Affordable Child Care Before & During a Crisis

Exposure to high-quality early childhood education (ECE) is the foundation for future academic success, especially for children from low-income families. Increasing access to subsidized child care is one of the many pathways that Texas is utilizing to provide affordable early educational supports for children from low-income families. Governor Greg Abbott and the Texas Workforce Commission...

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Access to Affordable High-Quality Child Care is Scarce

By Kaeleigh Hernandez, Early Childhood Education and Sara Moran, Center for Social Measurement and Evaluation  (Note: The analyses in this post uses data on child care centers from September 2019) Across Texas, nearly half of all child care providers accept subsidies - around 8,000 licensed child care centers and homes. However, many parents that qualify for subsidy care, have limited options of...

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Texas Child Care Desert Methodology

In recent years, the concept of food deserts - areas with little or no access to fresh foods - has been widely publicized and frequently studied. Borrowing from that concept, experts at Child Care Aware and Center for American Progress have coined the term “child care deserts” to identify another crucial commodity with limited availability. These child care deserts are areas where there is a...

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