Evaluation is defined as the systematic investigation of the worth or merit of an object (e.g. a program, school activity or instructional material). The most important purpose of an evaluation is not to prove, but to improve. Program evaluations provide an opportunity for feedback over a span of time that can be used to improve the quality and effectiveness of services and activities. It is meant to be a functional activity; one in which evaluation results can be used in making decisions and earning credibility for stakeholders and others with an interest and need to know.
At CELL, we are committed to a process in which the evaluation outcomes represent meaningful constructions that individual stakeholders form to "make sense" of the current program and services. This type of program evaluation rests on two elements: the first is determining what questions are to be asked and what information is to be collected on the basis of stakeholders input. The second element unites the evaluator and the stakeholders in an interaction that creates the product of the evaluation. The questions and information to be gathered are determined at the initial meeting or interview; the product will emerge from the interviews, observations, and review of other documents and data.
CELL has provided program evaluations in the areas of curriculum, school structures and cultures, special services, and small learning communities initiatives.
The evaluations are designed in collaboration with school district personnel in order to ensure that their interests and needs are met.
The purpose of the SISEP External Evaluation is to assess the impact of the SISEP Center’s federal grant. The SISEP Center, housed in the National Implementation Research Center at the University of North Carolina, provide states and districts with:
- Intensive technical assistance for establishing an effective and affordable infrastructure for implementation of education innovations
- Coordinated and shared professional learning via webinars and communities of practice bridging states and school districts
- Online and offline coaching, teaching, and learning about implementation, scaling and system reinvention
- Tools and resources for conducting work, including formative and summative evaluation tools for action planning, monitoring and outcome assessment
This external evaluation includes both quantitative and qualitative measures of process and outcomes. These data are collected in the targeted states and include information from regions in states, from school districts and school buildings.
For more information please contact Sandi Cole