Crisis Data Management: A Forum Guide to Collecting and Managing Data About Displaced Students
NCES 2010-804
February 2010

Chapter 5. Data Challenges—Unfortunate Timing

While there is never a "good" time for a crisis, some times are surely worse than others— and the timing of crises can have a significant impact on disaster response efforts. For example, hurricane Katrina reached land on August 29, 2005, at the very beginning of a school year. This created serious data issues, especially for student services and enrollment. At the other end of the school calendar, a crisis in the spring during state assessments or graduation testing would introduce a host of different data issues—for example, LEAs might be unable to confirm credits earned for graduation. The timing of a crisis can also affect data collection schedules, especially for systems still using aggregate collections. Therefore, a disaster recovery team should not only plan for multiple types of crises, but also for the full extent of scenarios with respect to timing.