Lesson: Assessing Your Local Education Agency's Data Quality
All Key Players1
This lesson is one of four workshops that serve as an introduction to building a culture of quality education data. All participants should complete all four workshops for maximum benefits. In this workshop, participants will begin to identify the elements that go into a culture of quality data and to assess their school or district with regard to data quality issues.
- Determine the status of data quality in participants’ schools.
- Begin planning to improve schools’ data
- Identify factors affecting data quality.
- Read pages 7 to 16 of the Forum Guide to Building a Culture of Quality Data: A School & District Resource.
- If you did not do so prior to this workshop, make a copy of the Before…After…Next (BAN) Chart for each participant.
- Look over Flow of Education Data diagram from the next lesson, Classifying Education Data, in preparation for the activities and possible discussions about steps in the process of entering, reporting, and using data.
- Determine whether you want to assign participants to partners for the think/pair/share activity2 in the Introduction and, if so, identify the pairings.
- Make a single copy of each of the following lesson resources (which can be found in the Lesson Resources section column at the top of this page) for each participant:
- Establishing a culture of quality data in a Local Education Agency (LEA) requires thought and planning, as do all transformational and strategic initiatives. After determining what is meant by a "culture of quality data," one of the next steps is assessing the nature of the data culture as it currently exists in the school or district.
- Many factors and practices in an LEA contribute to the quality of its data: standards and guidelines, policies and regulations, training and professional development, appropriate data documentation (e.g., calendars, data dictionaries, business rules), technology, etc. Having a Data Steward/Coordinator with primary responsibility for overseeing all these efforts can be an important factor in the successful transformation of the data culture.
1 Key players include board members, superintendents, principals, data stewards/coordinators, teachers, technology support staff, and office staff.
2 In think/pair/share activities, participants are asked to think about an issue or question, talk with a partner about their responses, and then share those responses with the larger group.