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How the PPN Site is Organized

The Promising Practices Network began in 1997 as a partnership between four state-level organizations that help public and private organizations improve the well-being of children and families. Due to funding constraints, the PPN project has concluded. The PPN website was archived in June 2014 and has not been updated since then.

The PPN website is organized around the following sections:

Programs that Work

Issue Briefs

Expert Perspectives

Resources by Topic


Programs that Work

PPN has organized information on effective programs under four broad outcome areas that are associated with the well-being of children, youth, and families. For each of these outcome areas, one or more specific indicators have been identified (for an explanation of terms such as "outcome area" and "indicator" please refer to the Glossary page). Individual programs may be listed under more than one indicator if applicable. PPN provides a summary of each program that identifies key information about its effectiveness. For information on how programs are assessed for inclusion on the site see How Programs are Considered.

The outcome areas and indicators are as follows:

Healthy and Safe Children


Children experiencing good physical health

Youths not using alcohol, tobacco, or illegal drugs

Youths abstaining from sexual activity or not engaging in risky sexual behavior

Children and youth not engaging in violent behavior or displaying serious conduct problems

Children not experiencing physical, psychological or emotional abuse

Children not experiencing anxiety or mood disorders, such as depression

Babies born weighing more than 5.5 pounds and improving outcomes for low birth weight babies


Children Ready for School


Children ages 0 to 5 exhibiting age-appropriate mental and physical development


Children Succeeding in School


Students performing at grade level or meeting state curriculum standards

Students graduating from high school


Strong Families


Families increasing economic self-sufficiency

Fathers maintaining regular involvement with their children

Children living in a permanent home



Issue Briefs

PPN Issue Briefs provide a concise overview of research-based information on a variety of topics, including child abuse and neglect, high school graduation, low birthweight, and more.



Expert Perspectives

In this section, child policy experts have shared their perspectives on a variety of child policy topics. The features are generally presented in one of two formats: videos of PPN policy forum events, and an "ask the expert" style question and answer feature. The videos of live events are generally recorded onsite, then posted online afterwards. In some cases these events are also accompanied by a live Webinar broadcast at the time. In the case of the "ask the expert" style format, questions were submitted electronically by PPN visitors, and answers from experts were posted in the following weeks. Expert Perspectives are available on the following topics:


Baby Videos and Television

Child Abuse Prevention

Child Care Quality

Child Care Quality Policy Forum  (video)
Head Start

Preventing Low Birth Weight

Quality of Children's Health Care Policy Forum  (video)

State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) Policy Forum  (video)


Resources by Topic

This section includes links to databases, fact sheets, screening tools, seminal reports, and a variety of other resources that are among the best research-based materials available on children and families. Resources and tools are available on the following topics:


Child Abuse and Neglect

Child Care / Preschool

Emergency Preparedness

High School Graduation

Low Birth Weight / Prematurity

Mental Health

Service Delivery

Substance Abuse