MAP Academy high school students hold up their school sign in front of a passing commuter rail train.

Engage New England Phase 1 Evaluation


Program goals:

Engage New England: Doing high school differently is a $30-million investment over five years to help New England innovators bring new high school models to life in communities across our region. Participants are partners in a innovation collaborative, learning from each other and like-minded innovators across the nation, while receiving robust technical assistance from design and planning through implementation. Together they build a diverse set of school models that transform high school learning experiences for young people whose prior experiences have failed to engage them and empower their success.


Barr is partnering with the independent research firm SRI International to capture the learnings from the Engage New England Initiative. The SRI team is documenting the work of partner schools as they plan and implement innovative models targeting youth who are off-track to graduate high school, as well as Springpoint’s role in leading a collaborative Design, Launch, Build process to support school designers.

Evaluation Questions:

SRI’s research is guided by three main learning questions:

  • What innovative strategies do grantees implement to better serve youth who have not experienced success in traditional school settings?
  • What best practices, common challenges, and successes emerge from grantees’ experiences planning and launching these innovative school models?
  • How do students experience these new school models, and what evidence is there that the strategies used support student success?


Beginning in 2019, the deliverables from this evaluation are expected to substantially build the field’s understanding on how to best serve this student population.

For more information on Engage New England: