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Westford Public Schools Partner with Stanford University’s Challenge Success Program



Superintendent Everett "Bill" Olsen.
Superintendent Everett “Bill” Olsen.

The following comes from the office of Superintendent Everett “Bill” Olsen.

Superintendent of Schools Director of Pupil Services

Assistant Superintendent of Director of School Finance
Curriculum & Instruction

Westford Public Schools
Administrative Offices
23 Depot St. Westford, Massachusetts 01886
www.westfordk12.us (978) 692-5560 FAX (978) 392-4497
Dear Parents/Guardians,

We write to share information about Westford Public Schools’ partnership with the Challenge Success program directed by Stanford University. For the past decade, Challenge Success has helped nearly 130 schools transform policies and practices to address the need for academic engagement and well-being for their students. WPS’s partnership with Challenge Success includes a multi-stakeholder team comprised of parents, students, and faculty members who reflect upon and examine the challenges, obstacles, and needed best practices to support our community of learners. At a later date, we will begin to comprise a Challenge Success team at each of the three WPS schools involved.

To deepen our understanding of students’ perspectives on their school experience, Westford Academy, Blanchard Middle School, and Stony Brook Middle School will administer a survey to students in grades 6-12 this October and Stanford University will assist with the analysis of the results. Our Challenge Success team and the staff at each of our buildings will use the data from this survey to support our work to meet the learning, social, and emotional needs of our students. Please read through the following information carefully for details about this upcoming, online survey that will take place at our three schools.

The Stanford Survey of Adolescent School Experience:
We will be administering The Stanford Survey of Adolescent School Experiences this October. This survey is part of a collaborative effort between our school and the Challenge Success project in the School of Education at Stanford University. The online survey measures middle and high school students’ perspectives on homework, extracurricular activities, sleep, physical health, stress, parent expectations, academic engagement, academic integrity, and teacher support. Over 80,000 students from more than 70 schools have taken the survey over the past several years, and schools have gained a great deal of information, such as what students see as stressful/challenging, as well as supportive within school. Nearby school districts that have also partnered with Challenge Success include Dover-Sherborn, Acton-Boxborough and Concord-Carlisle, to name a few. Survey results have guided schools in their efforts to make changes in areas requiring improvement. The survey will help Westford Academy, Blanchard, and Stony Brook identify areas of focus to better support student well-being and our students’ overall school experiences.

If you do not want your child/children to participate in the survey, please click on this link and complete the form. The survey is a research instrument at the Stanford School of Education and has been reviewed by their Institutional Review Board.
The following link takes you to the Challenge Success website if you wish to learn more about the program: http://www.challengesuccess.org/

Thank you for your support with this important initiative. We look forward to sharing more about our work with Challenge Success in the months to come. Please let us know if you have any questions.


James Antonelli, Timothy Hislop, Christopher Chew

James Antonelli, Westford Academy Principal,  Timothy Hislop, Blanchard Middle School Principal, Dr. Christopher Chew, Stony Brook SchoolPrincipal