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COE announces nearly $11.5 million in new IES grants

The University of Oregon College of Education (COE) has now received nearly $11.5 million in grants as of July 1, 2015 from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), the primary research arm of the U.S. Department of Education. Though grant awards to the COE come from a variety of government agencies and foundations, IES grants are typically among the most competitive.

Summaries of the grants and their principal investigators (PI):

Paths to the Future: Testing the Efficacy of a Career Development Intervention for High School Girls with Disabilities | $3.5 million

High school girls with disabilities need a special set of supports to help them prepare for the transition to employment, further education, and independent living. The Paths to the Future (P2F) study is designed to test the impact of a “girls only” curriculum for high school girls with disabilities. The P2F curriculum includes four major areas: self-determination, disability knowledge, gender awareness, and career and college readiness. More than 500 girls in 28 schools across Oregon will participate during the project's four-year span.

Principal Investigator Lauren Lindstrom said, "Paths 2 the Future is really all about  helping high school girls with disabilities have a better understanding of their future career options and opportunities. By offering this curriculum during high school, girls will be more likely to finish school and move into satisfying and productive careers as young adults." PI: Lauren Lindstrom, Secondary Special Education and Transition

READY for WAGES: Research on Employment of Adjudicated Youth through Working at Gaining Employment Social Skills Curriculum | $3.5 million

READY for WAGES is designed to improve outcomes for youth offenders with disabilities who are transitioning out of the juvenile justice system within Oregon, Maryland, and New Mexico. This program will be tested with 3,400 young offenders in correctional schools. The study will use the WAGES curriculum to increase workplace skills including self-regulation, teamwork, communication, and problem solving. The overall goal is to help this population gain employment by improving social skills in the workplace by providing a cost-effective education curriculum. PI: Deanne Unruh, Secondary Special Education and Transition

Nuestras Familias: Refining an Evidence-Based Intervention to Promote Latino Student Academic Success and Positive Behavioral Outcomes through School-Family Partnerships | $1.5 million

The goal of Nuestras Familias (NF) is to help support Latino students’ academic success by providing a model that includes parent training, teacher training, and bridge activities that link schools and families. Latino parents of middle school students in Oregon will receive the NF intervention that combines instruction, discussion, role modeling, and home practice to help strengthen parenting skills to help increase academic success. This intervention will also help establish teacher-student and teacher-parent partnerships to help decrease the student achievement gap. Using this program should provide positive outcomes for both the immediate and future timeframes in the categories of student adjustment, family environment, parenting skills, school engagement, and educational outcomes. PI: Charles Martinez, Center for Equity Promotion and Educational Methodology, Policy, and Leadership

SELECT: Social Emotional Learning in Early Childhood for Infants and Toddlers | $1.5 million

The purpose of SELECT is to create an effective social-emotional intervention for young children with disabilities to help increase parent-child interactions, improve the child’s social emotional skills, and improve overall school readiness for children with special needs. The use of this intervention should help prevent further social-emotional difficulties and behavior disorders while increasing positive parent-child interactions in the early years of life in children with disabilities. PI: Jane Squires, Early Intervention and the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities

Freshmen Success: Implementation of Comprehensive Universal Supports for School Engagement | $1.48 million

This project is designed to develop and test the Freshmen Success (FS) Model. FS includes systematic academic and behavior support for all freshmen provided by a trained leadership team established in the school. This team will also offer curricula focused on student engagement. Providing these additional support services during the freshman year should increase student achievement and retention through high school. The FS Model will be delivered to students with and without disabilities to help provide knowledge and skills in the transition from middle school to high school. The long-term goal of the project is to increase support during freshman year and thus increase achievement and graduation rates. Principal Investigator (PI): Brigid Flannery, Educational and Community Supports