Potential Return on Investment is Big

How Ripple Effects products can pay for themselves in a matter of months


There are many ways to justify the purchase of Ripple Effects software.  An effective approach we recommend is to relate a school or district’s direct revenue increase or expense reductions to the use of Ripple Effects programs.

Using results from effectiveness studies, we can show a 900% return on investment for Ripple Effects programs after just one year of use.  In other words spend $10,000 at one school and you can net a savings of more than $90,000 on the school’s budget.  How?  By reducing truancy or summer school referrals.  The returns are even higher if you combine the results.

Here are the results in economic terms. As you can see, when extrapolated to a whole school, the potential Return On Investment (ROI) is impressive.

No software

Software without teacher facilitation

Software with
teacher facilitation

Remedial summer school rate

30%

18% (down 42%)

12% (down 62%)

Cost to school

$152,000

$88,000

$59,000

Net savings first year

0

$64,000

$93,000

IRR $10,000K Yr. 1 investment

640% (6.4x)

930% (9.3x)

IRR $1,000 investment each
additional year

6400% (64x)

9300% (93x)

Social Return on Investment (SROI) is on top of this

The dramatic reduction in aggression (77% for kids without teacher intervention, more than twice the 32% for kids who received the added teacher intervention), and increase in prosocial behavior (32% for kids without teacher intervention, 22% for kids with the teacher), is on top of this, and has added economic and social implications for savings in school and corrections settings.

ROI: Reduced summer school referrals

In Spring 2000, The School of the Future, a middle school in New York City, implemented Ripple Effects social learning software and measured its effectiveness. In an effort to quantify how much schools might actually save by investing in Ripple Effects social learning software, we conducted a “Return on Investment” (ROI) analysis based on the findings from the School of the Future study. According to the findings, if extended school-wide, a $10,000 investment could net schools as much as $93,000 per year in savings on remedial summer school, or nearly 10 times the initial investment.

Detailed ROI analysis

Before using the Ripple Effects program, almost a third of the students at the School of the Future were required to attend remedial summer school. We do not have the exact per child summer school costs, but estimate it can’t be less than prorated, regular year costs, since teacher-student ratio is lower and school facilities are open, but costs are spread over fewer pupils. Assuming per pupil expenditure for a eight month year is $6,000 on average, and the six week summer program represents 16.67% of the 36 week regular school year, the per pupil cost for remedial summer school can be estimated at $1,000.

The cost of a school site license of Ripple Effects’ Ripple Effects for Teens software is just under $10,000, or about $20 per year/per student at a school with 500 students. The cost goes down the following year to a 10% maintenance fee ($1,000). There is no cash outlay for teacher time, since existing staff is used. The program can be used in an individual or group setting, with or without formal teacher facilitation.

In the study conducted by researchers from Columbia and NYU:

  • A sample group of kids from School of the Future used the program entirely on their own, during free time, about twice a week for 12 weeks. They were assigned 24 topics to explore. The only investment of teacher time was a few minutes a week to check for completion of assigned topics.
  • A second sample group got teacher facilitated discussion and role plays once a week, in addition to the software program, which they used on their own, with the same topics assigned and checked.
  • A control group of kids got neither.

Here are the results in economic terms. As you can see, when extrapolated to a whole school, the potential Return On Investment (ROI) is impressive.

No software

Software without teacher facilitation

Software with
teacher facilitation

Remedial summer school rate

30%

18% (down 42%)

12% (down 62%)

Cost to school

$152,000

$88,000

$59,000

Net savings first year

0

$64,000

$93,000

IRR $10,000K Yr. 1 investment

640% (6.4x)

930% (9.3x)

IRR $1,000 investment each
additional year

6400% (64x)

9300% (93x)