Mathematica is conducting this study to provide new information on preschool special education programs and inform policymakers and educators about promising practices to improve outcomes for preschool children with disabilities.
- Early childhood and K–12 education
- Racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic inequality
- Family engagement
- Evaluation design and technical assistance
- Quantitative and qualitative data analysis
- Early Childhood
- Systematic Evidence Reviews
- Family Support
- Human Services
Megan Shoji specializes in designing evaluations and in-depth, qualitative studies of services to address racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic inequality in the areas of early childhood, K–12 education, and family support. Her expertise includes designing, conducting, and synthesizing evaluations and providing technical assistance.
Shoji is a key researcher, contributing expertise in quantitative and qualitative methods, on various projects assessing programs to improve the well-being of vulnerable children and families. She led a quantitative analysis of the implementation and outcomes of five strategies for early childhood family engagement in predominantly low-income Latino communities for the Heising-Simons Foundation’s Family Engagement Impact Project. Currently, she is designing a mixed-methods implementation study of two strategies to increase family engagement in early math. She is also coauthoring a descriptive report on how states and school districts serve children ages 3 to 5 with disabilities under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act for the U.S. Department of Education’s Evaluation of Preschool Special Education Practices. Shoji also provides evaluation technical assistance to two state departments of child welfare that, as Children’s Bureau grantees, are developing and evaluating homelessness prevention programs for youth and young adults currently or formerly in foster care. Shoji is also a certified reviewer for the What Works Clearinghouse and designed a systematic review of grantee knowledge products and evaluations for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
Shoji holds a Ph.D. in sociology and an M.S. in educational psychology quantitative methods from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Before joining Mathematica in 2014, she conducted an in-depth, qualitative study of how relationships develop between parents and school staff in predominantly low-income Latino communities. She also contributed to an evaluation of a whole-family, after-school family engagement program. In addition, Shoji spent two years as an English teacher at a public junior high school in Japan.