John Fantuzzo


Member Since: 2019


Dr. John Fantuzzo is the Albert M. Greenfield Emeritus Professor of Human Relations in Policy, Organizations, Leadership, and Systems Division of the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. He is also the Founder and Co-Director of the Penn Early Childhood and Family Research Center and the Co-Founder of the Actionable Intelligence for Social Policy National Network in the School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a leader in school-based, early childhood care and education research and the use of Integrated Data Systems (IDS) to advance policy and practice in education and human services to enhance the well-being of children from low-income households living in segregated disadvantaged in large urban center. His work has included building and using scientific validated capacities at the macro- and micro-systems levels for various populations of historically undeserved children. At the macro-level, he co-developed the Kids Integrated Data System (KIDS) for Philadelphia, which was one of the first fully integrated data systems providing research to inform policies and public services. Based on the success of KIDS, he was invited along with Professor Dennis Culhane to develop and Co-Director of Actionable Intelligence for Social Policy (AISP), a national network of Integrated Data Systems serving state and local governments with development funding from the MacArthur Foundation. At present the network and its learning communities represents over 50% of the U.S. population. Along with Professor Culhane, he has been promoting the use of IDS nationally through (1) identifying best practices, (2) assisting in the development of local and state IDSs, and (3) using AISP Network sites to conduct large multi-site research. This model for integrating data across Education, Health, and Human Service agencies in Philadelphia and nationally has been used to study how various publicly monitored risks affect the educational well-being of policy relevant subgroups of children and youth. At the micro-level, Fantuzzo has developed and tested school-based interventions using large-scale RCT designs. He was the Principal Investigator, along with Professors Vivian Gadsden and Paul McDermott, for the development and validation of the Evidence based Program for Integrated Curricula (EPIC), a comprehensive school-readiness program for Head Start, which was successfully tested with a randomized control trial across the School District of Philadelphia (SDP). He is also the developer or co-developer of several published assessment tools validated for young children and families from low-income households that are used nationally and internationally. Currently he is along with Professor Vivian Gadsden Co-Directing the Penn Early Childhood and Family Research Center at Penn. This center has developed and implemented in partnership with the School District of Philadelphia the comprehensive Conquering Kindergarten Program that is assessing and monitoring social emotional learning competencies in kindergarten at scale and providing evidence-based tools to teachers and parents to advance these skills. The center is also working with the City’s Office of Children and Families to expand access to quality preschool education for all young children in Philadelphia and to foster family engagement and equity. Fantuzzo serves on the editorial boards of research journals in education and early childhood. He is also the recipient of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Involvement award and the third recipient of National Head Start Research Mentor award.

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