A Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial of the Safe Public Spaces in Schools Program, New York City, 2016-2018 (ICPSR 37476)
Version Date: Apr 28, 2021 View help for published
Summary View help for Summary
This study tests the efficacy of an intervention--Safe Public Spaces (SPS) -- focused on improving the safety of public spaces in schools, such as hallways, cafeterias, and stairwells. Twenty-four schools with middle grades in a large urban area were recruited for participation and were pair-matched and then assigned to either treatment or control. The study comprises four components: an implementation evaluation, a cost study, an impact study, and a community crime study.
Community-crime-study: The community crime study used the arrest of juveniles from the NYPD (New York Police Department) data. The data can be found at (https://data.cityofnewyork.us/Public-Safety/NYPD-Arrests-Data-Historic-/8h9b-rp9u). Data include all arrest for the juvenile crime during the life of the intervention. The 12 matched schools were identified and geo-mapped using Quantum GIS (QGIS) 3.8 software. Block groups in the 2010 US Census in which the schools reside and neighboring block groups were mapped into micro-areas. This resulted in twelve experimental school blocks and 11 control blocks which the schools reside (two of the control schools existed in the same census block group). Additionally, neighboring blocks using were geo-mapped into 70 experimental and 77 control adjacent block groups (see map). Finally, juvenile arrests were mapped into experimental and control areas. Using the ARIMA time-series method in Stata 15 statistical software package, arrest data were analyzed to compare the change in juvenile arrests in the experimental and control sites.
Cost-study: For the cost study, information from the implementing organization (Engaging Schools) was combined with data from phone conversations and follow-up communications with staff in school sites to populate a Resource Cost Model. The Resource Cost Model Excel file will be provided for archiving. This file contains details on the staff time and materials allocated to the intervention, as well as the NYC prices in 2018 US dollars associated with each element. Prices were gathered from multiple sources, including actual NYC DOE data on salaries for position types for which these data were available and district salary schedules for the other staff types. Census data were used to calculate benefits.
Impact-evaluation: The impact evaluation was conducted using data from the Research Alliance for New York City Schools. Among the core functions of the Research Alliance is maintaining a unique archive of longitudinal data on NYC schools to support ongoing research. The Research Alliance builds and maintains an archive of longitudinal data about NYC schools. Their agreement with the New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE) outlines the data they receive, the process they use to obtain it, and the security measures to keep it safe.
Implementation-study: The implementation study comprises the baseline survey and observation data. Interview transcripts are not archived.
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Access to these data is restricted. Users interested in obtaining these data must complete a Restricted Data Use Agreement, specify the reasons for the request, and obtain IRB approval or notice of exemption for their research.
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Study Purpose View help for Study Purpose
The Comprehensive School Safety Initiative aims to improve the safety of schools and students nationwide by developing, supporting, and rigorously evaluating school safety programs, practices, and strategies. This study supports these aims by testing the efficacy of an intervention focused on the school environment. This study examined the quality of implementation, cost, and impact of the Safe Public Spaces program (SPS), as well as its effect on the displacement of crime or diffusion of benefits to the area immediately outside the school (Johnson, Guerette, & Bowers, 2014).
Study Design View help for Study Design
The study comprises four components: an implementation evaluation, a cost study, an impact study, and a community crime study.
The implementation evaluation was designed to provide deeper understanding of how well the SPS program was administered, how school staff experienced the program, and whether there were meaningful differences in safety practices between schools participating in SPS and control schools.
The cost study aimed to accurately estimate the overall cost per student of the SPS activities. Using a subsample of three SPS and two control schools, the study team computed the average cost per student using the Ingredients Approach (Levin, McEwan, Belfield, Bowden, & Shand, 2018).
The purpose of the impact study was to measure the effect of SPS on student and school outcomes, the study team conducted a randomized trial. Twenty-four schools, all interested in the program and willing to be randomized, were pair-matched according to school characteristics using propensity scores, and then schools in each pair were randomly assigned to SPS or control conditions.
The community crime study examined the frequency of juvenile arrests before, during, and after SPS implementation and examined evidence for displacement of juvenile crime or diffusion of benefits to the geographic area immediately around the schools (Braga, Papachristos, & Hureau, 2014; Wang, Liu, & Eck, 2014).
Sample View help for Sample
24 schools were pair-matched according to school characteristics using propensity scores. Each pair was then randomly assigned to SPS or control conditions.
Universe View help for Universe
Middle schools in New York City
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The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.