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Peggy G. Carr, Ph.D.
Acting Commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics

Statement of National Center for Education Statistics Acting Commissioner Peggy Carr on Integrity, Independence, and Innovation: The Future of NCES, a report from the National Institute of Statistical Sciences
January 25, 2017

In 2015, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) commissioned the National Institute of Statistical Sciences (NISS) to perform a review of all aspects of the Center’s performance as a Federal statistical agency. It had been three decades since the last comprehensive review of the Center, a review which produced the landmark National Academy of Sciences report, Creating a center for education statistics: A time for action (1986). In the intervening years, rapid technological and economic change has heightened the need for clear, accurate, credible, and easily accessible data—and changed many things about the way we do our business.

This new, thorough appraisal shows how the Center has evolved and responded to new developments in education and statistics over that time, and provided us with insights about future priorities—and challenges—for our work. The report’s recommendations set an ambitious agenda for the Center: to refine the scope and focus of the Center’s work; establish and extend Center-wide synergies and efficiencies; and leverage new technology to make education data more accessible and useful to our many publics.

This year will mark 150 years since Congress created a federal office of education to collect statistics that showed the condition and progress of education in America. We at NCES are looking forward to developing new strategies for producing the high-quality data that researchers, educators, administrators, and policymakers at every level have come to depend on from us.

The report is available at the National Institute of Statistical Sciences website at