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Harvard Family Research Project Receives $1.75 Million Grant

The Harvard Family Research Project (HFRP) at the Harvard Graduate School of Education has received a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for $1.75 million to support research on community and family involvement in education and out-of-school time learning and development. Research funded by this grant began in September 2002 and will continue through August 2005.

The research, entitled "Linking Children's Learning Across Families, Communities and Schools," seeks to provide a knowledge base and accompanying tools to support more innovative, linked, and participatory forms of community and family involvement in education. HFRP will develop accessible and credible information about promising and proven services, practices and policies, professional development tools, and feasible and productive evaluation approaches.

HFRP will disseminate research findings, tools, and resources via The Evaluation Exchange, the Project's quarterly publication, and through the Family Involvement Network of Educators (FINE), an online resource that develops effective family-school-community partnerships.

Harvard Family Research Project strives to increase the effectiveness of public and private organizations and communities as they promote child development, student achievement, healthy family functioning, and community development. In its relationships with national, state, and local partners, HFRP fosters a sustainable learning process-one that relies on the collection, analysis, synthesis, and application of information to guide problem-solving and decision-making. It was founded in 1983 by its director and HGSE lecturer, Heather B. Weiss, Ed.D.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation was established in 1930 "to help people help themselves through the practical application of knowledge and resources to improve the quality of life and that of future generations." Its programming activities center around the common vision of a world in which each person has a sense of worth; accepts responsibility for self, family, community, and societal well-being; and has the capacity to be productive, and to help crease nurturing families, responsive institutions, and healthy communities.

To achieve the greatest impact, the Foundation targets its grants toward specific areas. These include: health; food systems and rural development; youth education; and philanthropy and volunteerism. Within these areas, attention is given to the cross-cutting themes of leadership; information and communication technology; capitalizing on diversity; and social and economic community development. Grants are concentrated in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the southern African countries of Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe.