April 2018 Awards

Principal Investigator: Barbara Boone
Project Dates: 4/19/0218-6/30/2018
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $15,900
Project Sponsor: OH Department of Education

Family & Community Engagement Community of Practice Project for School Improvement 1003 Grantees

For this project with the Ohio Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement, the Center on Education and Training for Employment (CETE) within EHE will develop and facilitate a peer-to-peer network for Family/Community Liaisons and administrators of School Improvement 1003-funded schools in Ohio. The peer-to-peer network meetings will include a webinar and three regional meetings in the Spring of 2018. CETE will facilitate the meetings to provide a space and support for school personnel to share practices, discuss challenges, identify local resources, and network with colleagues. The peer-to-peer network is intended as a first step toward a community of practice providing resources and information, and developing a network of instrumental social supports for schools implementing this work. CETE will synthesize the feedback gathered from the regional discussions to provide the Ohio Department of Education with information for improving supports for school-level family and community engagement.

In 2017, 56 schools awarded SI 1003 grants prioritized family and community engagement for improvement. These schools are expected to implement a systemic, integrated approach to family and community engagement and the development of local school-community partnerships. Schools selecting the Family and Community Engagement component of the Ohio Model appoint a Family/Community Liaison. In addition, the LEA must create and implement a plan to evaluate the effectiveness of the services provided by community partners in order to utilize the most effective resources for students and families.

Principal Investigator: Andrew Hanks
Project Dates:5/1/18-4/30/21
Anticipated Total Award Amount: $237,396
Project Sponsor: NSF Div Graduate Education & Res Development

Collaborative research: Who are interdisciplinary STEM doctoral graduates? Exploring and assessing antecedents and economic consequences

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provide billions of dollars in food assistance to low-income households in the US. These benefits have been shown to reduce infant mortality, improve overall health, and help households become more food secure. Yet many eligible people do not participate and others leave benefits on the table. These are important issues because the health and well-being of lower income households are affected by the foods they consume.

For this project, we propose to study factors that influence enrollment decisions in the WIC and SNAP programs using primary and secondary data sources. Initially, we will establish a data sharing agreement with the Ohio Department of Health’s WIC agency. Administrative data from Ohio will allow us to identify factors associated with underutilization of WIC benefits. Insights from this initial effort will contribute to the development of surveys that will be distributed to current WIC recipients, WIC-eligible nonparticipants who participated in the past, and WIC-eligible nonparticipants who have never enrolled in WIC. We will also examine SNAP utilization patterns. To secure access to SNAP enrollment data and facilitate future surveys targeted toward SNAP participants, we will establish ties with state SNAP administrators. At the same time, we will target a survey towards attendees at SNAP education courses run by OSU Extension. This will give us the initial results needed to inform more comprehensive analyses of SNAP administrative and survey data. Lastly, we plan to establish ties with local grocers. We expect these relationships to result in joint research efforts that ultimately link industry, state agencies, and academia. This project will provide unique policy-relevant insights about participation in food programs by conducting research through partnerships with a diverse set of stakeholders involved in the WIC and SNAP programs. This should contribute to food security, and more importantly, improvement in the lives of program recipients. We hope the project will also serve as a model for establishing similar partnerships in other states or for other government assistance programs.