SEG completed its comprehensive evaluation study of the Newport News Public Schools' SPARK program. SPARK, the Summer Program for Arts, Recreation and Knowledge, is an initiative of the Newport News Public Schools (Virginia) in partnership with local businesses, museums, non-profit organizations and city agencies that provides an engaging menu of offerings for students four days a week during the summer. The school district commissioned SEG to assess whether the program improved student achievement and helped prevent or eliminate "summer slide," or students' summer learning loss. The study recently concluded with a committee presentation to the Newport News School Board.

The Daily Press, the daily newspaper serving Newport News, Hampton, and the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, provided coverage of the SPARK evaluation study presentation to the School Board. The newspaper article provided highlights of the study and the school district's commitment to follow through with program adjustments in response to the findings.

The College of William and Mary awarded a contract to Shaffer Evaluation Group to provide consulting and technical services to the university. SEG will provide data collection services, including on the ground data collection services (e.g., household surveys and stakeholder interviews) to carry out university-led randomized control trials (RCTs) and qualitative policy research. SEG also will provide subject matter expertise to contribute substantive analysis to flagship reports.

SEG has worked with William & Mary since 2007. William & Mary is the nation’s second oldest College and the first college to become a College. Established in 1693 by British royal charter, William & Mary is a public, coeducational institution based on a strong liberal arts tradition that offers the full range of degree programs from the baccalaureate to the doctor of philosophy and doctor of law. The College enrolls approximately 6,300 undergraduate students and 2,000 graduate students.

Welcome to Dr. Hindman, who has been contracted as a senior research associate for Shaffer Evaluation Group. Previously, Dr. Hindman served as the School University Research Network (SURN)’s Assistant Director at The College of William & Mary; SURN is a partnership of over 28 Virginia school divisions that is funded largely through grant awards. Her career in education began as a substitute teacher at the age of 18; she has been a middle school teacher, a science specialist, designer of educator performance appraisal systems, outreach specialist for Project HOPE, Virginia’s McKinney-Vento program, and adjunct faculty member. Throughout her career, Dr. Hindman's focus has been on engaging and impactful learning experiences whether she is working with students or fellow educators. She has presented widely on student engagement, effective hiring practices, and lessons learned from grants she has co-authored, and she is the author of seven books and numerous articles. Dr. Hindman holds a Virginia Postgraduate Professional License with endorsements in Elementary Grades K-8, Gifted Education, and Administration and Supervision PreK-12. Dr. Hindman earned a Ph.D. in Educational Policy, Planning and Leadership (K-12) at the College of William & Mary. The University of Virginia awarded her Master of Teaching and B.A. degrees.


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