Junior Achievement Rocky Mountain, Inc. (JA) employs evaluation techniques to prove and improve the impact of programs offered to elementary, middle and high school students.

Results & Findings
JA students are better prepared to earn their success.  JA students feel less entitled and more self-motivated than their peers. They understand how to control their finances and are better prepared for the workforce. In fact, JA alumni earn 20% more than the general population and are more likely to be better off than their parents.  JA alumni start businesses at a rate 2 1/2 times higher than the general population.  Read more about how JA programs change students’ perceptions of themselves and their worlds in a way that helps them become more successful as adults. 

Evaluation Methodology
The results presented in the JA Impact Report are based on both an external evaluation conducted by QREM, LLC. and internal analysis. Over a period of three years, Junior Achievement-Rocky Mountain, Inc. randomly selected students by classroom and assigned them into one of three groups as participants in a third-party evaluation. Testing effects were monitored, and other mitigating factors such as low-income status were controlled. Statistical testing included determining differences between pre- and posttests, examining correlational findings, and building structural equation models to determine impacts. Sample sizes in matched groups exceeded minimal standards for each level (elementary, middle, and high) and each group. The results and findings presented in this report are statistically significant with a confidence level of 95% or higher.

Additionally, JA surveys educators and volunteers debrief after each experience to understand their perceptions of JA programming and its impact on students and the community. We gather feedback from each of our stakeholders to continually improve the implementation of our programming.

Colorado Department of Education
As of 2014, the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) required school districts to test 4th, 7th and 12th grade students’ levels of Personal Financial Literacy (PFL). PFL is tested through the Social Studies content area of the Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS). In 2015, the legislature passed Senate Bill 15-056 requiring that the CDE sample 1/3 of the state over three years in Social Studies. CMAS results are generally available to the public six months after the tests are administered. District- and school-level results are referenced by JA to identify any variances between schools that do and do not partner with JA.

Student Testing
Volunteers implement our programs, but educators will administer student testing. JA will select certain classrooms for assessment. When a classroom is selected, educators will receive an email and/or testing packet including their evaluation materials. Paper tests will include postage-paid envelopes in order for educators to easily return the completed assessment materials to the JA office.

For More Information
For more information about the evaluation process or to request a copy of our Annual Evaluation Report, please contact Megan Silbert.