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Strategies for Using School Climate Data (Webinar)

Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Midwest hosted Strategies for Using School Climate Data, a Making Connections interactive webinar designed to increase awareness of how school climate data can be used to enhance student performance. In the course of the webinar, we considered recent research suggesting that school climate is an important lever of student and school success.

This interactive webinar featured Adam Voight, Ph.D., Climate Technical Assistance and Research Specialist at WestEd. Dr. Voight provided a research-based discussion of his recent work on linking school climate to school and student success (A Climate for Academic Success: How School Climate Distinguishes Schools That Are Beating the Achievement Odds) and discussed the methods and measures involved.

The event also featured discussions led by panelists who are currently participating in the Safe and Supportive School Grant Program. Panel members highlighted their successes, challenges, and lessons learned in the course of collecting and using school climate data. The session included a Question and Answer period to facilitate dialog among presenters and participants.



Research Expert

Adam Voight, Ph.D., Climate Technical Assistance and Research Specialist, WestEd
Dr. Voight drew on the results of his 2013 study, A Climate for Academic Success: How School Climate Distinguishes Schools That Are Beating the Achievement Odds, to discuss the emerging evidence linking school climate to student success. Dr. Voight’s discussion highlighted the methods and measures involved in his work, as well as opportunities and challenges related to using school climate data to inform school programs and policies.


Lisa Chaney, Director of Research and Evaluation, Southeast Kansas Education Service Center.  
Ms. Chaney has worked on numerous federally funded research grants for the past 20 years and has been with Service Center since 2005.  She is currently the evaluator of the Kansas Safe and Supportive Schools initiative.  She also serves as Board President of Kansas Family Partnership and is a member of the Scientific Review Committee for the Kansas Youth Suicide Prevention project and the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services State Epidemiological Outcomes Workgroup.
Andrea Alexander, Maryland Department of Education
Ms. Alexander holds a Master's Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and is a Licensed Mental Health Professional in Maryland. Currently she works for the Maryland Department of Education running the school Climate Initiatives at Maryland’s Department of Education.  She is the state coordinator for PBIS and the Project Director for Safe and Supportive Schools. With 35 years of experience in the child and family service delivery system, she has implemented several unique and successful program models in state and local government and in the non-profit sector. Her investment and longstanding commitment to improving services for children and their families has been a common thread throughout her career.  
Christina Jordan, Sheppard Pratt Health Systems
Ms. Jordan is currently a school climate specialist at Sheppard Pratt Health Systems in Baltimore, Maryland, where she has worked with the Maryland Safe and Supportive Schools Initiative since 2011. Previously, she served as both a special educator and school counselor in the Baltimore public schools. She holds both a Master of Education in School Counseling and a Master of Arts in Teaching, with an emphasis on special education.


Related Resources

Voight, A., Austin, G., & Hanson, T. (2013). A climate for academic success: How school climate distinguishes schools that are beating the achievement odds. San Francisco, CA: The California Comprehensive Center. Retrieved from