Harnessing the scientific potential of linked, administrative data to inform children’s programs and policies.

Making Smarter Use of Data Together

The Children’s Data Network is a data and research collaborative focused on the linkage and analysis of administrative records. In partnership with public agencies, philanthropic funders, and community stakeholders, we seek to generate knowledge and advance evidence-rich policies that will improve the health, safety, and well-being of our children.
Each person in the world creates a Book of Life. This Book starts with birth and ends with death. Its pages are made up of the records of the principal events in life. Record linkage is the name given to the process of assembling the pages of this Book...
Halbert L. Dunn, 1946

A Data and Research Collaborative

The Children’s Data Network receives essential infrastructure funding from First 5 LA and the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, with additional project support from other philanthropic and public partners.

Latest News

New Findings on Los Angeles County Probation Youth With Previous Referrals to  Child Protective Services

New Findings on Los Angeles County Probation Youth With Previous Referrals to Child Protective Services

A new study linked administrative records for youth leaving Probation supervision with data on previous referrals to Child Protective Services. The results indicate that among youth involved in the juvenile justice system, the prevalence of past child protection involvement may be even higher than previously realized. Four out of five LA Probation youth had received at least one referral for suspected maltreatment, with many experiencing their first referral early in childhood. Prevalence of referred and substantiated maltreatment, case opening, and foster care placement was significantly higher among Female (vs. male) youth exiting Probation and Black (vs. Latino and white) youth exiting Probation.

These data illuminate the importance of coordinating cross-system responses bot for “dual status” youth who are simultaneously involved with both child protection and delinquency systems and for “crossover” youth who sequentially come to the attention of both systems.  They also suggest that it is critical that we carefully examine the resources available and connections made for families referred to child protection. Previous research has shown that a first referral of maltreatment is often a seminal event in the life of a child – frequently followed by additional referrals and other adversities.1 Adoption of a countywide approach to prevention provides a significant opportunity to align public and private resources, enhance existing prevention and early intervention efforts, and support more families so they don’t require the attention of our child protection and delinquency systems.

See the Crossover Youth project page for more information and to download the full report.

1 Dakil, S. R., Sakai, C., Lin, H., & Flores, G. (2011). Recidivism in the child protection system: Identifying children at greatest risk of reabuse among those remaining in the home. Archives of pediatrics & adolescent medicine, 165(11), 1006-1012.
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