Driven by Data

Using Academic Data to Attack the COVID Slide

Planning for how to address the COVID slide, or even a COVID slowdown, is challenging given the undefined path of the next few months, but one thing that is certain is that data will play a more critical role than ever in efficiently and effectively planning to make up for lost time and learning. The key questions many are looking to answer – which data to use, when to collect the data, and what to do with the data. While no consensus has been reached, a number of ideas and strategies are emerging that capture how schools plan to use current and future data to attack this learning slide.

Prepare your Student Information System for the new year

A successful first day of school begins months before the first day of classes. Schools with strong data practices typically begin initial Student Information System (SIS) planning and preparation during the spring of the prior school year. A staff member or team coordinates the completion of major tasks so that the student information system is ready for use by the first day of school. We recommend this sample timeline to get you started and highlight four things that can derail these plans.

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Board Governance of Academic Performance (Part 2)

This the second of our two-part series on best practices in board governance over academic performance. Part 1 focused on the responsibilities of an academic performance committee and the importance of creating a calendar around reviews of school performance. In this post, we delve further into how strong boards review school performance, as well as common metrics and visualizations that can help boards easily understand their student performance data. A board’s goal should look for ways to understand the trends in academic performance throughout the year, not just in a once-per-year snapshot when state assessment results are published.

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COVID-19 Resources: Supporting Students, Families, and Staff

This post provides information on what you may need to be thinking about in the areas of finance, student data, human resources, student meals, and technology as a result of COVID-19. We will continue to update this as we have more information. If there are specific questions you would like to see answered that you do not see below, please reach out to your EdOps Specialist.

DISCLAIMER: EdOps does not provide legal or tax advice. Consult an attorney or tax accountant for specific questions.

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DC Data Validation: Improving your process

Throughout the year OSSE and PCSB ask schools to “validate” a number of student data points – from re-enrollment rates to PARCC achievement subgroup scores. Schools are asked to review and certify certain groups of data in OSSE’s or PCSB’s databases and confirm their accuracy (versus the school’s internal records). While data validation can feel daunting, making a roadmap at the beginning of the school year allows you to streamline validation task management during the school-year when there are so many competing priorities. 

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Using Interim Assessments to Predict End of Year Results

Schools are taking more assessments than ever before. While the output and data from assessments vary – RIT scores and percentiles from NWEA MAP or a percent score from Achievement Network – common challenges exist for school leaders, regardless of the exam. School leaders are all aiming to create meaning from student scores and put interim scores in context with end-of-year outcomes. This post identifies one method (of many) that will help leaders make sense of current assessment results and what they imply about end-of-year outcomes.

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