Initiative Description: Eligibility criteria for schools included a) those who were located on O’ahu, Maui, or Moloka’i b) were K-5 or K-6 community schools (were not academy, charter, or special education) c) had at least 25% of students receiving free or reduced-price lunch, d) were in the state’s lower 3 quartiles of standardized test scores e) had annual student mobility rates under 20%, thereby ensuring that at least 40% of a selected cohort was still in the same school by the end of the trial. Matched pairs were randomly assigned to either the intervention or control condition before recruitment. The elementary classroom curriculum consists of 140 lessons/grade per academic year, each 15-20 minutes in length and taught by classroom teachers. The trial was conducted from 2002-2006 with a 1 year follow up.
Study Results: Intervention schools significantly improved reading and math scores compared to control schools and reported lower absenteeism, fewer suspensions and retentions.
Reference: Snyder et al (2010). Impact of a Social-Emotional and Character Development Program on School-Level Indicators of Academic Achievement, Absenteeism, and Disciplinary Outcomes: A Matched-Pair, Cluster-Randomized, Controlled Trial. Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness, 3: 26–55.
Level of Evidence: Very Good