Framingham Schools Stop Harvard University Study

Framingham Superintendent of Schools: "Harvard University will purge and return the data related to the study."

The project was being led by Todd Rogers with Harvard University's Kennedy Center for Public Leadership.
The project was being led by Todd Rogers with Harvard University's Kennedy Center for Public Leadership.
The "Improving Performance Through Excellent Attendance" research project conducted by Harvard University has been suspended, due to irregularities in the implementation of the study, Framingham Superintendent of Schools Stacy Scott informed the Framingham School Committee Tuesday night.

Last week, Framingham Patch was the first media outlet to report that parents had concerns about the study. Some parents were concerned that the study participation was an automatic opt-in and they could only opt out if they signed a form--which some parents said they never received.

Using students' records and interviews with parents, the Harvard University research team was looking to identify ways to increase student attendance via parental involvement in schools.

"There were some initial miscommunication with the roll out of the study," said Framingham Superintendent of Schools Stacy Scott in a phone interview last Tuesday. "We have paused the calls to parents. We have paused the study to make sure letters have gone out to everyone and in every language. We want to give parents enough time to opt out."

Last night, Scott said "parents raised concerns that parents did not receive a reasonable amount of time to exercise their right to exclude their children from the project, and parts of the study began prematurely."

"These concerns caused the district to review the implementation process," said Scott. "as a result of the review the project was stopped." 

“While we feel we followed appropriate standards of practice for research, the sequencing errors in implementation made it hard to continue the project” said Scott.

"Harvard University will purge and return the data related to the study," said Scott.

We are reviewing our research policies to ensure careful control of all confidential student information, said Scott in a press release.

David Miller September 18, 2013 at 10:19 AM
Glad to hear, but just the same this should be an Opt-In and not an Opt-Out type of study.


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