School of Education HeadshotsJoan Buttram, Ph.D 
Joan L. Buttram is director of  the Delaware Education R&D Center and Assistant Professor in the School of Education at the University of Delaware. She has over 35 years of experience conducting program evaluations, the majority focused on programs to improve outcomes for disadvantaged children. Since coming to Delaware in 2006, she has studied Delaware schools that outperform expectations and how district and school leaders spend their time. She is currently conducting research and/or evaluation studies related to high school reform, professional learning communities, multiple professional development and training programs in both K-12 and higher education, climate change, and health services for individuals with disabilities. She also teachers the doctoral level course on program evaluation for the School of Education and advises doctoral students in the Education Leadership program.

Liz Farley Ripple, Ph.DElizabethFarleyRipple
Dr. Elizabeth N. Farley-Ripple is an Assistant Professor in the School of Education at the University of Delaware.  She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in Education Policy and has been working in educational research for ten years.  She has expertise in quantitative and mixed methods and applies a variety of methodological tools to research projects, including in regression, multi-level models, social-network analysis, surveys, and content analysis.  Her research expertise is in policy analysis and evidence-based decision-making, and recent work includes studies of administrator mobility, school and teachers’ use of data, teacher quality and effects, and equity in student outcomes.  Dr. Farley-Ripple has been awarded grants from the Spencer Foundation and the Institute for Education Sciences and has published research in respected journals such as Educational Researcher, Journal of Educational Administration, Educational Policy, the American Journal of Education, Educational Management, Administration, and Leadership, and Urban Education. 

Shameeka M. Jelenewicz, MA
Shameeka M. Jelenewicz is a researcher at the Delaware Education R&D Center. Shameeka is an applied sociologist with over 11 years of experience developing,implementing, and managing evaluation projects. Specializing in conducting community based projects related to social science research, positive youth development, and place-based capacity building efforts. A large extent of her work focuses on adolescents and young adults in the fields of education, out-of-time programs, and reproductive and sexual health. She possesses strong research methodology skills, both quantitative and qualitative and has intermediate to advance data analysis skills. She has facilitated an array of research and evaluation projects, including those related to truancy reduction and prevention, abstinence, community-based youth engagement and youth activism and adolescent and young adult sexual and reproductive health. She has been published in peer-reviewed journals and has presented her work at various local and national meetings.