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Innovative Partnerships and Methods for Evaluating ESEA Program Effectiveness

Session presenters will discuss how their teams have partnered in innovative ways to use various tiers and sources of evidence to inform fiscal and programmatic decision making for ESEA programs. In addition, the session will include specific information about school-level processes utilized to determine return on investment in Title I schools. Also, the presenters will outline how team members work together to create specific Tier 3 evidence studies used to evaluate district-level initiatives funded by Titles I and II. The results of these studies and evaluation are used as the basis for budget and program planning. The information shared in this presentation is applicable for both school and district-level leaders and will include specific examples that can be used in schools or districts of any size, and with any Title program(s).

This talk was presented at:
2021 National ESEA Conference
February 2021 in Cyberspace
For more information:
Alyson Lerma

Dr. Alyson Lerma has worked in various federal programs roles for more than a decade, both at the district and state levels. She has served as a district supervisor in large school systems in Tennessee, as well as the Director of ESEA and IDEA Monitoring at the Tennessee Department of Education (TDOE). Dr. Lerma developed the three tier risk-based monitoring system currently in use at TDOE and spear-headed a state-wide initiative to restructure the Title I, Neglected and Delinquent Program in Tennessee. She currently serves as the Director of Grants Development and Management in the second largest school district in the state with more than 81,000 students and various charter and non-public schools. In addition, she has applied successfully for multiple federal grants and her team is responsible for overseeing various state and federal grants. Her workstreams and role also include the district Title II program director and equitable services liaison. She holds elected positions in two state-wide organizations, M.A.S.S. (for the state's largest school system) and TAFPA (for federal programs administrators in TN). Michael White has worked in MNPS for two decades, beginning his career in education as a classroom teacher. He has served as a Title I school facilitator and currently is the Title I Director. He works closely with the district local finance team, as MNPS has student-based budgeting (weighted student budgeting). Mr. White oversees a team of school-level facilitators who support the district's 130+ Title I schools. Krista Davis serves as the Program Evaluation Analyst in the Research, Assessment, and Evaluation office in MNPS. She has experience in federal programs, federal accountability and assessment, as well as in the private sector, having conducted research at American University, McRel Institute, Centerstone Research Institute, and more. Krista designs correlational studies to help determine return on investment for Title-funded initiatives (among many other things).

Michael White

Mike White has worked in MNPS for two decades and is the Title I Director. He oversees a team of school-level facilitators who support the district's 130+ Title I schools. ESSA: Title I, school-level Title I requirements, family engagement, budgets (including student based/weighted budgeting.)

Krista Davis

Expertise: Quantitative and qualitative data collection via surveys, structured and semi-structured interviewing, systematic observation, focus group facilitation, visual methodologies, and other ethnographic techniques, methods for analyzing quantitative data, including descriptive and comparative statistical analysis (e.g., multiple regression, t-tests, analysis of variance and covariance, propensity score analysis, psychometric analysis) Methods for analyzing qualitative data, including inductive analysis with open coding, content analysis with enumeration, thematic coding, and visual analysis; conducting research to determine return on investment from ESSA-funded initiatives.