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New DQC Report Shows How States Are Connecting Policy to Practice

Time To ACT

The new Data Quality Campaign (DQC) annual report, Time to Act 2019, underscores that the most effective state efforts to improve student outcomes don’t exist in a silo; they cut across multiple policy priorities to make data work for students. The report, released this week, highlights that state policymakers—state education agency leaders, state boards, legislators, and executive leadership—must prioritize investments in data access and use.

DQC’s policy priorities provide a framework to organize action that supports K-12 student achievement and emphasize that people must have the data they need to answer questions and take action. DQC outlines the following four priorities for states:

  • Measure What Matters. Be clear about what students must achieve and have the data to ensure that all students are on track to succeed.
  • Make Data Use Possible. Provide teachers and leaders the flexibility, training, and support they need to answer their questions and take action.
  • Be Transparent and Earn Trust. Ensure that every community understands how its schools and students are doing, why data is valuable, and how it is protected and used.
  • Guarantee Access and Protect Privacy. Provide teachers and parents timely information on their students and make sure it is kept safe.

The report shares examples of how states are connecting policy to practice to make data work for students.

  • The Texas Education Agency (TEA) sheds light on the performance of educators across the state by collecting a variety of information about its teacher workforce. These measures include information about individual educator preparation programs.

  • Idaho makes certain that local schools are supported by aligning the data in its report card with the needs of local leaders. By equipping local leaders with the data they need and eliminating an unnecessary reporting step, state leaders have decreased the burden on local leaders and allowed for more targeted decision making.

  • Idaho seeks to reach all communities by publishing a range of data about school quality, above and beyond what is federally required. The report card is translated into languages other than English and features performance data for newly required student groups, including military-connected students, students in foster care, and students experiencing homelessness.

  • Tennessee prioritizes appropriate access to data for school leaders involved in strategic planning—to better ensure that student needs are met while data is being kept safe.

 Through InformTN, approved users access the system with a single sign-on and are supported by the state with any access issues.

To learn more, read the full report.


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Katrina Norfleet

Editor, AACTE

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