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family engagement

Data Use and Inquiry in Research-Practice Partnerships: Four Case Examples

The four case examples presented in this brief are drawn from the Gardner Center’s substantial experience conducting rigorous research in research-practice partnerships. The first case describes a partnership approach that enhances a school district’s capacity to use integrated longitudinal data to tackle persistent problems of practice and monitor students’ development. The second case exemplifies how an equitable research model, grounded in mutualism and sensitive to cultural nuances, can be leveraged to elevate the experience marginalized communities.

Systemic, Integrated, and Sustainable Family Engagement across the Early Age Spectrum in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties

This brief reports findings from a needs assessment study conducted to inform project planning for a systemic, integrated, and sustainable family engagement initiative—the Family Engagement Impact Project—in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties. The needs assessment consisted of two surveys administered to low-income, immigrant families and the providers who engage them. Approximately 800 families and 120 providers across six communities participated.

A Study of Family Engagement in Redwood City Community Schools

Since 2007, the Redwood City School District (RCSD) and Redwood City 2020 have partnered with the Gardner Center to examine how participation in community school programs shapes students’ outcomes. This brief summarizes the research literature and describes a 2011-2012 study that focused on family engagement practices as well as the factors that promote or inhibit family engagement in five of the district’s community schools. Gardner Center researchers conducted a total of 50 interviews and focus groups with school staff, families, and students.

An Implementation Study of the Art in Action Program

Targeting students in grades K-8, Art in Action’s program consists of 12 age-appropriate lessons per year led by parent and teacher volunteers. The curriculum is based on historically significant artists and their works of art. Through semi-structured discussions, students examine a variety of masterpieces, learning about the artist as well as particular art styles and techniques. Students then apply the concepts they learned to create original works of art.

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