Brief Description of Research and Evaluation Study

The University of Texas at Austin was awarded a three-year contract in July 1999 to direct a research and evaluation study of the Houston Annenberg Challenge (HAC) school reform initiative. The study was performed by a collaborative team of researchers from three Texas universities: Rice University, the University of Houston, and The University of Texas at Austin.


The overarching purpose of this study was to investigate:

  • How the HAC put the reform initiative into place.
  • What the schools were doing as a result of the initiative.
  • What apparent impact the initiative had upon schools and upon students' academic achievement.

The study of HAC was embedded in a larger national study of all Annenberg-funded initiatives in the United States. Eighteen projects have been funded nationally, and Houston is one of nine centered in a major urban setting.

The intent of the national Annenberg Reform effort is to enable the formation of a unique model of public/private partnerships that will positively impact the academic achievement of students in the U.S. The hallmark of the national model is the bottom-up, or grassroots, approach.

This study of the Houston Annenberg Challenge was designed to explore how and to what extent the intent of the national Annenberg Institute has been realized in Houston.

Updated 1/21/2003