General Information

Applicants wishing to conduct original research in Shelby County Schools should submit a complete application packet to the District. A complete application packet includes:

Applicants affiliated with colleges or universities that have an IRB process will be required to submit IRB approval prior gaining final, official approval from Shelby County Schools. However, applicants may begin the District approval process by submitting the Application Request for Data or Conducting Research, draft copies of consent forms, and the $25 application fee while awaiting IRB approval. The District will review the application and, if approved, indicate conditional approval pending receipt of IRB approval. Due to the volume of requests we receive, SCS can only review and approve requests for graduate students and university faculty. SCS cannot accept research or data requests from undergraduate students.

Please note that approval from the Research Department does not obligate any school, principal, teacher, or student to participate in a research project. Additionally, no research projects will be allowed in the schools during the State testing window each spring.

Applicants proposing research projects that also require a data file from the District should provide details of the requested data file in the appropriate section of the application. An additional fee may be applied to cover the cost of creating the requested data file. (There are publicly available data that can be accessed and used without District approval.)

The Application Request for Data or Conducting Research, drafts of consent forms, and Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval (if available) should be emailed to [email protected]. Please include all attachments in one email. Please do not print out and mail your application materials, as we cannot process hard copies of applications at this time.

For payment of the $25 application fee, we can accept only a check or money order made out to Shelby County Schools. The check or money order should include the applicant’s name printed in the memo line and be mailed or delivered to:

Department of Research & Performance Management Coe – Room 304
Shelby County Schools
160 S. Hollywood Street
Memphis, TN 38112

The following links may provide helpful tips:
Research generally NOT approved by the District
Data available from the District
Publicly available data
Information to include in consent forms
Checklist for complete application
Frequently Asked Questions