General SLAQ FAQ
- Do I need to complete a SLAQ?
- Is a site-level assessment required for other settings? Are there recommended assessment tools available for other settings?
- We already use another needs assessment at our site. Does this replace it?
- May I shorten or otherwise modify the SLAQ?
- Have the SLAQ tools changed as a result of the FFY 19-20 pilot?
The SLAQ requirement applies to all LHDs. There is no minimum funding level for completing the SLAQs, nor is there a minimum number of SLAQs required for any given LHD.
SLAQs are required in four settings only: retail, early care and education, schools, and out-of-school. Within these four settings, a SLAQ should be completed for each site where an LHD is engaged in site-level PSE work. A SLAQ is not required for sites where SNAP-Ed work does not involve PSE, or where PSE is not happening at the site level.
While site-level assessments are only required by the LHD Funding Application for the four settings listed above, your IWP should include activities to "conduct appropriate community level and setting-based needs assessments" for other settings in which you plan to work. Recommendations should be available in the IWP Blueprint materials.
The SLAQs are designed to provide comprehensive site assessment data for program planning and annual reassessment, so in most cases, you should be able to replace other assessments with the SLAQ. In cases where a SLAQ is required and a site has been using a different assessment, we recommend that you work with this site to determine whether the same information is being collected, and whether the SLAQ can replace rather than duplicate the current tool. There are some exceptions to this. If you work with schools that implement Smarter Lunchrooms Movement (SLM), then the SLM Scorecard should be completed at those schools. It is our recommendation that the meal section of the School SLAQ be completed on the same day that the SLM Scorecard observations are carried out.
When you or a site wish to continue collecting data with an assessment that has been used previously, and the two tools collect similar information, you may find that you are able to use the information on the SLAQ to complete the other assessment, or that if the site completes both assessments at the same time, it does not take much more time.
SLAQs may not be shortened, as they are comprehensive and include important information on evidence-based and emerging PSE strategies, based on literature review and validity testing. You may add supplemental questions needed for local evaluation and planning purposes. All SLAQs have been designed to be as concise as possible, with sections that can be skipped when they do not apply to a site.
On the Retail SLAQ, questions not needed for aggregate state-level analysis have been removed or clearly delineated as optional. Additionally, some sections do not apply to every store and can be skipped.
Yes! We used results from pilot-testing the SLAQs and validity- and reliability-testing to make a number of improvements. Revisions include minor changes to wording to improve question clarity, removal of questions that we found to be unnecessary, addition of questions when feedback identified an important missing area, updates to scoring, and re-ordering and re-formatting to improve ease-of-use. The biggest change is that we have migrated all SLAQs over to a new platform called Survey 123.