Oklahoma Passes Family Support Accountability Act
On April 28, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin signed into law H. B. 2157, the Family Support Accountability Act, which ensures that the state's home visiting investments will support programs with proven records of effectiveness. The act, which passed with overwhelming bipartisan majorities in the House and Senate, also requires monitoring of outcomes such as maternal and infant health, family self-sufficiency, and school readiness.
Oklahoma’s reforms are based on a policy framework for family support and coaching programs developed by Pew to address the findings of its nationwide survey of home visiting programs. The study found that most states lacked policies to link funding to program effectiveness and that few adequately monitored family outcomes.
The Family Support Accountability Act was backed by early childhood advocates, the organization Smart Start Oklahoma, and the home visiting community. Crucial legislative leadership came from the bill's lead authors, Representative Jon Echols (R) and Senator A.J. Griffin (R).