The SLDS Program and the following related initiatives support the design, development, implementation, and use of P–20W education data systems through technical assistance, funding, proactive grants management, best practice exchange, data standards creation, and the cultivation of a community around education data.
|Race to the Top (RTT): Race to the Top is a competitive grant program to encourage and reward States that are implementing significant reforms in the four education areas described in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA): enhancing standards and assessments, improving the collection and use of data, increasing teacher effectiveness and achieving equity in teacher distribution, and turning around struggling schools. The U.S. Department of Education announced the winners for Phase 1 of Race to the Top on March 29, 2010, the winners for Phase 2 on August 24, 2010, and the winners for Phase 3 on December 22, 2011. Race to the Top winners will help trail-blaze effective reforms and provide examples for States and local school districts throughout the country to transform our schools for decades to come.|
|Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC): The purpose of the Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge program is to improve the quality of early learning and development programs and services and close the achievement gap for children with high needs. The RTT-ELC is a competitive grant competition that focuses on improving early learning and development for young children by supporting a State’s efforts to design and implement an integrated system of high-quality early learning and development programs and services and to increase the number of children with high needs enrolled in those programs and services. The overarching goal is to make sure that many more children, especially children with high needs, enter kindergarten ready to succeed.|
|Workforce Data Quality Initiative (WDQI): WDQI supports the development of, or enhancements to, longitudinal administrative databases that will integrate workforce data and create linkages to education data. States will incorporate workforce information into longitudinal data systems to expand the scope and depth of data from programs. The WDQI also emphasizes promoting improvements and the level of quality of these systems, in addition to increasing the accessibility of performance data, including data reported by employment services and training providers. The WDQI is being implemented to support a collaborative partnership at the Federal level between the Departments of Labor and of Education. The long-term WDQI and SLDS goal for States is to use their longitudinal data systems to follow individuals through school and into and through their work life.|
|Common Education Data Standards (CEDS): The Common Education Data Standards (CEDS) project is a national, collaborative effort to develop voluntary data standards for a key set of education data elements to streamline the exchange, comparison, and understanding of data within and across P-20 institutions and sectors.|
|National Forum on Education Statistics: The Forum develops data standards and best practice recommendations, and provides helpful advice on the collection, maintenance, and use of elementary and secondary education data. To this end, the Forum's diverse group of representatives from state and local education agencies, the federal government, and other organizations works collaboratively to address problems, develop resources, identify best practices, and consider new approaches to improving data collection, quality, privacy, and utility while remaining sensitive to privacy concerns and administrative burden.|
|Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC): PTAC is part of ED's initiatives to help the field understand all of their responsibilities as stewards of student data. The center serves as a one-stop resource for state and local education agencies, the postsecondary community, the early childhood community, and other parties engaged with education data on questions related to protecting privacy and confidentiality, and maintaining data security. PTAC is developing coordinated information and best practices on privacy, confidentiality, and security measures as they relate to P-20W longitudinal data systems.|
|Effective Practices Conferences: Conferences including MIS, STATS-DC, and the SLDS P-20W Best Practice Conference provide venues for state and district staff to share proven practices and lessons learned, and to engage with colleagues from across state lines, as well as representatives from the federal government and national non-profit organizations. These events play a key role in helping staff build relationships and cultivate a community around P-20W education data system design, development, implementation, and use.|