2018: Year in Review

This year SPR staff logged thousands of hours partnering with our clients to, amongst other things, lead a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Audit; conduct a regional scan to explore individualized learning across three Midwest states; and participate in conversations around the possibility of bringing apprenticeship to a larger scale within California and the U.S. Below we share a subset of our work in this Year-in-Review. For the new year, we look forward to continuing to be thought partners with our clients and engaging with the Continue reading →

Come Join SPR at APPAM!

Come join SPR as we share our insights at the Association for Public Policy and Management (APPAM) 2018 Fall Research Conference, Evidence for Action: Encouraging Innovation and Improvement, from November 8-10, 2018 in Washington DC. Follow @social_policy and #2018APPAM on Twitter for updates and reflections. Please join us for the following sessions: Thursday, November 8, 2018: 10:15 AM-11:45 AM Panel: Providing Public Workforce Services to Job Seekers: The WIA Adult and Dislocated Worker Program Gold Standard Evaluation Madison A – Mezz Level (Mariott Wardman Park) Continue reading →

See you at AEA 2018!

SPR is excited to share our insights at the annual meeting of the American Evaluation Association (AEA) 2018 Annual Conference,  Evaluation 2018: Speaking Truth to Power, from October 29th – November 3rd 2018, in Cleveland, OH. Follow @social_policy on Twitter for updates and reflections from #Eval18. Please join us for the following sessions: Wednesday, October 31, 2018: 4:30 PM-5:30 PM Fostering Early Field Building: Evaluating Seeds of an Emerging Field Veterans Meeting Room C (Hilton Cleveland) SPR Staff: Traci Endo Inouye, Rachel Estrella Thursday, November Continue reading →

Skills for Success: Apprenticeship and the Future of Work

SPR is thrilled to help coordinate Skills for Success: Apprenticeship and the Future of Work, an afternoon event that is part of a weeklong festival called Zurich Meets San Francisco. When:       Wednesday, October 24, 2018, 2:30 p.m. – 7:45 p.m. Where:      Hotel Kabuki 1625 Post Street, San Francisco, CA 94511 [Map] Skills for Success will focus on how dual education and training systems can help engage untapped talent in California and help prepare us all for the future of work. With tight labor markets Continue reading →

SPR at the 2018 iNACOL Symposium!

Join SPR at the 2018 iNACOL Symposium in Nashville, TN! SPR will be joined by Allison Barmann, Vice President of Strategy and Learning at the Bush Foundation, to share results from our regional scan of individualized learning, and lead a rich discussion on culturally relevant teaching and learning in action. Culture in the Classroom: Embedding Cultural Relevance in Teaching and Learning Authentic learner-centered education is individualized to each student and grounded in their unique learning styles, aspirations, and cultural identities. In 2016 and 2017, SPR Continue reading →

Implications of California’s 2018-19 Budget for Career and Technical Education

This blog post was written by Jennifer Hogg and Laura Pryor of Social Policy Research Associates. Career and Technical Education (CTE) is experiencing a resurgence in high schools nationwide, and California is no exception. Much of this resurgence is due to its evolution, from traditional vocational education to CTE pathways, which can provide students with a tangible leg-up for both college and career. California’s 2018-19 budget provides the financial support districts need to create, expand, and sustain high quality programs. History of CTE funding in Continue reading →

Announcement of New Hire, Raquel L. González, PhD

SPR is pleased to announce and welcome Raquel L. González, PhD as Director of Business Strategy and Senior Associate. Dr. González will be focused on supporting business development at SPR, engaging with clients, and developing processes and systems to support SPR’s business strategy. In addition, she will serve as a Senior Associate designing and managing studies. Dr. González has over 18 years of research and evaluation experience. Her research has focused on describing and understanding different pathways and experiences in education. She has content experience Continue reading →

To and Through College: The Need for Postsecondary Transition Support Programs

This blog post was written by Jennifer Hogg of Social Policy Research Associates. The leaky pipeline to a bachelor’s degree is getting leakier for low-income students. While the U.S. saw a decrease in college enrollment among all income brackets between 2008 to 2013, the decrease was even larger for students from low-income families.[i] Among those students who do enroll in college, most do not leave with a degree. While roughly half of students from low-income backgrounds enroll in college, fewer than one-third of those who Continue reading →

Engaging Youth in Evaluation: Why is Youth Participatory Evaluation Critical?

This blog post was written by Ivette Gutierrez of Social Policy Research Associates. Community Participation in Research and Evaluation The American Evaluation Association, in a 2011 Statement on Cultural Competence in Evaluation[1], urged evaluators “engage with diverse segments of communities to include cultural and contextual dimension important to the evaluation.” Youth Participatory Evaluation (YPE) is a key way to achieve this goal because it meaningfully engages youth participants in the design and implementation of an evaluation that considers and reflects their values, identities, and culture. Over Continue reading →

Reflections on SPR’s Approach to Site Visits

This blog post was written by Madeleine Levin and Laura Pryor of Social Policy Research Associates. “Conducting and Using Evaluative Site Visits”, a recent volume of New Directions for Evaluation (Number 156, Winter 2017) provides stimulating reading for evaluators. As SPR staff discussed this volume in our monthly qualitative methods brown bag, we were particularly interested in what our site visit approach could add to the discussion. Reflecting on the articles in this volume helped us articulate additional key features of SPR’s approach to evaluation Continue reading →