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2002 Using Technology To Enhance Connections Between Home And School: A Research Synthesis

Date: April 2002
Author: William R. Penuel, Deborah Y. Kim, Vera Michalchik, Sarah Lewis, Barbara Means, Robert Murphy, Christine Korbak, Alexis Whaley, Jacob E. Allen
Affiliation: Planning and Evaluation Service, U.S. Department of Education
Keywords: home-school connection, parents, students


The purpose of this report is to synthesize research on the effectiveness of programs that use technology to improve links between home and school, with the aim of guiding future evaluation and policy. To develop this report, the researchers conducted a comprehensive review of research on the subject of technology-supported programs that link home and school. They also gathered data from interviews and observations of selected programs to learn more about how the programs are implemented and their prospects for sustainability and replicability.

Key Findings:

* Evaluation results from these studies suggest that although it may not be easy to determine whether greater access to technology at home in itself makes a difference, enhanced home access may work in combination with larger reform efforts to improve learning outcomes for students.

* The positive associations between program participation and achievement were highest in programs that were embedded within larger reform initiatives. It may be that in these reform-embedded programs, technology augments and supports the school change process.

* The vision for improving educational opportunities to learn with technology by linking home and school more closely is one to which many schools and districts have a strong commitment. Many more schools and districts have planned programs like the ones we reviewed that will be implemented in the near future. To understand their likely impact better, we will need more studies that examine the broad range of impacts these programs might have, not just on students but also on parent-teacher and parent-child relationships.

Source Article: http://ctl.sri.com/publications/downloads/Task1_FinalReport3.pdf