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An Evaluation of the Early Progress of The Pittsburgh Promise ® and New Haven Promise Gabriella C. Gonzalez and Robert Bozick.

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Presentation on theme: "An Evaluation of the Early Progress of The Pittsburgh Promise ® and New Haven Promise Gabriella C. Gonzalez and Robert Bozick."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Evaluation of the Early Progress of The Pittsburgh Promise ® and New Haven Promise Gabriella C. Gonzalez and Robert Bozick

2 2 In 2010, The Promise Asked RAND to Evaluate Early Progress Toward Its First Two Goals 1. Mitigate and reverse the population declines in the city of Pittsburgh and the enrollment declines in PPS 2. Grow the high school completion rates, college readiness, and post-high school success of all PPS students 3. Deploy a well-prepared and energized workforce and an eager core of community volunteers

3 3 RAND Examined Baseline Trends and Patterns in Four Areas Enrollment in PPS Influence on parents’ decision to enroll child in PPS Influence on students’ attitudes and behaviors College enrollment and persistence rates

4 4 PPS Enrollment Has Begun to Stabilize Since the Program’s Inception Number of K-12 students

5 5 Percent of Students Enrolling and Continuing in PPS Has Remained Steady Percentage Continuation Enrollment Pre-Promise School Years ( , ) Early Promise School Years ( , , )

6 6 There Is No Clear Pattern In Enrollment of New Transfers into PPS Schools Number

7 7 The Promise Was an Important Factor in Parents’ Enrollment Decisions 3.9 “We wanted to take advantage of the Pittsburgh Promise scholarship program” Not at all important Somewhat important Very important

8 Not at all important Somewhat important Very important Non-Whites and Parents with Lower Education and Economic Status Assigned The Promise Higher Importance than Other Parents Parents with a high school degree or lower (4.4) Other (3.5) Non-white (4.2) Parents with lower income (4.3)

9 9 Students Reported Being Motivated by the Program The opportunity for college funds motivated them to strive to meet eligibility requirements –Obtain at least a 2.5 GPA –Maintain 90 percent attendance The Promise factored into their decisions to attend college However, many students did not understand key program elements

10 10 Students reported being motivated by the program Summary of Key Findings Enrollment in PPS Influence on parents’ decision to enroll child in PPS Influence on students’ attitudes and behaviors College enrollment and persistence rates PPS enrollments have stabilized, rather than continuing to decline; numbers of students new to the district are inconsistent across the years Parents considered the program an important factor in enrollment decisions Enrollment rates for scholarship- eligible graduates have increased; persistence rates have remained about the same

11 11 RAND Recommended Some Ways to Strengthen the Program Standardize efforts to provide information to students about the college and federal financial aid application process Implement practices to improve students’ knowledge about characteristics of The Promise scholarship program Implement online reporting to help students ascertain their eligibility status Institute a mentoring system in which Promise Scholars mentor high school students

12 12 Looking Ahead These early findings provide a solid baseline for future evaluations To fully assess the program’s impact, there must be enough time for a full cohort to go through high school, complete college, and enter the work force Future research should examine other important components of the program, such as –High school graduation rates –Community engagement –Workforce characteristics

13 13 In July 2013, New Haven Promise Board asked RAND to Analyze Progress to Date of New Haven District Reforms and New Haven Promise 1.Measure the progress of New Haven Public School (NHPS) students’ educational outcomes –Examine variations in educational outcomes since 2010 and associations among School Change components –Compare district’s educational outcomes: Before 2010 With students in other CT districts 2.Evaluate the implementation of New Haven Promise –Analyze students’ and parents’ attitudes about Promise and NHPS –Review Promise’s performance to date: Compare program design to “promising practices” in field –Examine patterns of community-level indicators Since 2010 Compared to other cities in CT 3.Develop a tool for New Haven Promise to report education indicators each year

14 14 Some Research Ideas How well have “Promise”-like programs (writ large) met their intended goals? –More (needy) students attending PSEs? –Supported students in persisting and graduating from PSEs? –Encouraged students to return to region? –Motivated parents to enroll children in District? Are these programs helping students most in need to find life trajectories that best meet their desired goals or needs? –PSE? –Find a job? Of what kind? Are these programs improving community outcomes?

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