Program Evaluation

A program evaluation of an elementary school’s bullying prevention and intervention efforts emerged from a study I conducted on elementary school children’s sexist and homophobic teasing/bullying and how school staff perceive and respond to this content. More specifically the research project investigated 1) how elementary school staff perceive and intervene in conflict and bullying involving sexist and/or homophobic teasing, 2) what assumptions these conceptions and strategies are based upon and 3) how school staffs’ decisions of when and how to intervene might serve to reproduce social norms.

After interviewing top administrators and analyzing the school policies and the formal bullying programs teachers were required to use, I interviewed teachers and other staff who supervised children daily.

Findings from this study indicate that the current psychological model of bullying used in US public schools is inadequate and the addition of a sociological approach has the potential to increase the efficacy of bullying prevention and intervention efforts, particularly with respect to adding the consideration of social power and stigma to the intervention efforts of staff and faculty.

Program Administration

I have a wide-range of administrative experiences that include the improvement of existing programs through grant writing and reporting, data collection and management. While working at SafeHouse Center from 2001 to 2005 I was responsible for updating and improving the ability of the organization to accurately collect and report data on the more than 3000 survivors served annually.

I first sought to gain an understanding of the grant reporting responsibilities of the organization as well as the practicalities of service provision and data collection (e.g., how much and what kind of data can and should be collected when an advocate meets with a rape survivor at the hospital immediately following an assault?).

After finding, funding and implementing an appropriate data collection software program, I refined the software to meet the needs of the organization, created forms and protocols and trained staff in data collection and entry. As this process unfolded, I solicited and responded to the concerns and needs of direct service staff and administrators with regard to the software and procedures.

The organization’s grant reporting was thereby made more efficient and more accurate while being sensitive to the needs of advocates and survivors of violence.

Community Activism and Organizing

Prior to work I did in the service of survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, I founded and led a Tenants’ Association at the University of California, Santa Barbara in order to address serious concerns (e.g., mold, traffic safety and the extended loss of electricity) voiced by many of the 1200 residents of family student housing.

Before the founding of this organization residents were able to take grievances to the administration only as individuals, which proved ineffective for most. Furthermore, families residing in the US on student visas feared losing their ability to finish their university programs if they were evicted (and therefore deported) as the result of repeated complaints.

This organization, then, created an avenue through which tenants’ could present concerns and requests to the university administration through a recognized set of representatives who were versed in the rights and responsibilities of the tenants’ and landlords.

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