We have been evaluating Department of Education grants, including GEAR UP Partnership grants since 2000, and Statewide NC GEAR UP since 2015.

Edstar has created a system of resources for GEAR UP evaluation.  Dr. Janet Johnson’s GEAR UP experience includes serving on: Data and Service Quality Committee, Research and Evaluation Committee, as a representative for the Executive Committee for the National College and Career Readiness Evaluation Consortium (CCREC) Evaluation and Research Committee for CCREC 2.0.

System of Resources

We have created an easy-to-use system for collecting service data, showing alignment with site-level work plans, and documenting service alignment with site-level claims. All of our online forms and record-keeping tools can be customized to create a nicely formatted document for the entry, and also creates a database of the data entered that can be downloaded as a text file or in Excel.

Work Plans

We have an online form for prompting site-level staff to create a work plan, using the vocabulary of the GEAR UP services. This not only standardizes work plans across all sites, but also results in plans that clearly align to the allowable and required GEAR UP services  (as opposed to trying to retro-fit services into these categories at the end of the service).

Service Activity Sign-in Sheets

We have designed Service Activity Sign-in Sheets to be printed and used on paper by schools and sites that deliver the services.  Student signatures are required to document services.  Using these Service Activity Sign-in Sheets standardizes service documentation across all sites.  The sign-in sheets are designed to collect all of the information that is needed for reporting on the GEAR UP Annual Performance Report, for CCREC if needed. We provide training for using the Service Activity Sign-in Sheets, and maintain a website with the sign-in sheet resources and short instructional videos.

The Service Activity Sign-in Sheets are customized for each GEAR UP service.

GEAR UP staff have access to these on a customized website (See below).  The videos were created after one year of piloting and testing the type of support needed by staff to understand what is required in GEAR UP record keeping.


A form for logging in the Service Activity Sign-in Sheets creates a database that can be used to create formative reports on acitvity status and for comparing with claims data.


We provide an online form to create a database of itemized claims. This can be merged with the work-plan and Service Activity Sign-in Sheet data to rectify financial claims for reimbursement.

Student Key-in Form

This form is used to key in individual student service data which creates a database that can be used to create reports.


Reporting Outcomes

We provide the information needed for the Annual Performance Report and help complete it.  We create infographics, data-dashboards, and presentations for school districts and program staff to share with their stake holders.  We provide these reports periodically throughout the year for formative feedback for the Program Director to use with schools.

Customized Data Collection Resources

We create forms for schools to use for keeping records of services.  Staff who serve the students use these forms to record the information needed for the Annual Performance Report, for research on best practices, and for fiscal accountability. We host these forms on a website that the school staffs access. 

Weekly Reports for Service Monitoring

We log the sign-in sheets into our custom system and use the database to create an interactive report that shows how many services of each type have been delivered in any time period. Enter different time periods.

Documentation for Fiscal Accountability

The database created from logging the activity sign-in sheets can be used for fiscal accountability.  We save and file each sign-in sheet with a unique ID that ties it to this log. The Program Manager than has easy to use efficient records for fiscal accountability.

Relevant Presentations

  • Janet Johnson, Eric Sparks, & Nikki Liles, Aligning College and Career Readiness Metrics with the ASCA National Model. NCASC Conference, North Carolina. November 2018
  • Rungano Nyejeka, Nikki Liles, Janet Johnson, The Incredibles – NC Educators Guiding Student Success, ACT Conference, Raleigh NC, November 2018
  • Janet Johnson & Carol Cutler White, Hidden Figures: Promoting Readiness. NCCEP GEAR UP Conference, San Francisco. July 2017
  • Janet Johnson & Carol Cutler White, The GEAR UP Rubix Cube. NCCEP GEAR UP Conference, Washington D. C. July 2016.
  • Janet Johnson & Carol Cutler White, EDSTAR Analytics. How to Create Logic Models/Theory of Change. Synergy Conference. March 2016