Inside Home Visits: A Collaborative Look at Process and Quality
Home visit quality was assessed in an Early Head Start program (N = 92 families) using measures developed in collaboration with program staff. Parent ratings were high, indicating “customer satisfaction” with home visiting. Home visitors rated their relationships with parents as having a feeling of partnership and their home visits as typically going well. Researcher observations of home visits were consistent with the program’s theory of change: Home visitors attempted to facilitate parent-child interaction, parents were engaged in home visit activities, home visitors interacted mostly with both parent and child together. Families perceived by staff as improving the most had home visitors observed by researchers as most effective at engaging parents and involving parent and child together. Families seen as “success” cases showed consistently high engagement in home visits; while “nonsuccess” cases showed consistently low home visitor facilitation of parent-child interaction. Through a collaborative partnership, assessments of home visits were used to guide both program improvement and research.