The Chicago School Readiness Project (CSRP) has begun a new wave of data collection in early 2019. Building on prior research, this effort looks to assess the long-term benefits of the project’s preschool intervention in Head Start, which launched in 2003. This initial intervention focused on supporting students’ self regulation and emotional regulation in preparation for upcoming years of schooling.
CSRP’s new round of research will focus on these same students, asking about their future plans as they enter adulthood. Most of the students are now 16-19 years old, nearing the end of high school, and deciding what their next endeavors will be. These students have accomplished a lot since the early years of the study — ending up in a variety of schools, pursuing individual activities and passions, with some participants even moving to different states. The researchers are now interested in hearing about which unique paths students will be taking in the coming years. Will students pursue further degrees? Are they enrolling in 4-year universities, community colleges, or vocational schools? Will they go into the workforce? What kind of work are they interested in?
The information gathered this year will provide valuable insights into the long-term effects of school interventions on student successes. CSRP students are more than just participants in a research study, they are collaborators. The researchers value their voices and want their stories to be heard. The information these participants provide will be used to inform other educational interventions and the future direction of research, which will help future generations of students to come. This information is not only interesting from an academic standpoint but is increasingly valuable in informing revision of policy and education standards.
Additionally, CSRP investigators Amanda Roy and Christine Li-Grining will soon be launching a new project with the same cohort. This investigation will provide a new intervention for the participants, helping them face the transition from teen to adult. In doing so, the researchers hope to provide support for the individuals’ burgeoning education and career goals.