November 18, 2014 — Dr. John Fantuzzo pioneered using Big Data to identify situations that put children at risk, followed by leveraging that data to search for solutions.
With research partner Dennis P. Culhane, Fantuzzo, Director of Penn GSE’s Child Research Center, developed the Kids Integrated Data System, which mines government databases for clues to help build resiliency in at-risk students.
As Sarah D. Sparks reports in Education Week, Fantuzzo’s work is now being used as a model for similar systems in New York and Chicago.
“From a child-development perspective, it’s not status that disadvantages you or advantages you. It’s your experiences … abuse or homelessness … Some very concrete sets of experiences are more powerful predictors than free and reduced lunch,” Mr. Fantuzzo told Education Week.
“We have to build capacities that make visible important, mutable variables that we can do something about.”