July 21, 2021

Recent research from Child Trends provides recommendations for adapting in-person programs for remote delivery, including school-based health and sexual health programs. These recommendations are the result of research conducted as programs shifted from in person to virtual programming during the COVID-19 pandemic. Because many programs lacked guidance or experience on how to provide virtual services before COVID-19, researchers hope these studies will benefit program participants and service recipients beyond the pandemic. 

Our most recent resource, Adapting an In-person Sexual Health Program for a Virtual Setting summarizes the process for and lessons learned from virtually implementing El Camino, a sexual health promotion curriculum focused on goal-setting activities for participants and aimed at Latino youth. The curriculum is available for free in English and Spanish. 

Key recommendations include developing clear instructions for program facilitators, tailoring those instructions to the technology implementation partners and participants are most comfortable using, and pilot testing curriculums to gather feedback. Additionally, programs should give themselves more time to train on and implement remote programs compared to in-person programs, and offer multiple strategies to engage youth online. They should also consider having more than one facilitator, which helps alleviate technical challenges that come with virtual implementation. 

Other research on adapting in-person programs for remote delivery during and after the COVID-19 pandemic:  

School-based Strategies to Support Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health

Strategies for Providing School-based Family Planning during COVID-19

During the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth can help connect home visiting services to families

Virtual Coaching to Support Early Care and Education Programs during COVID-19

Strategies to Virtually Support and Engage Families of Young Children during COVID-19 (and Beyond)