CONTACT:  Michele Clark
Communications Coordinator
573-751-3469

Vol.  45, No. 15                     

Feb.  17, 2011

                        

Missouri Fares Well in School Data Report

The Data Quality Campaign (DQC) released an analysis Feb. 16 showing that the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education now has all 10 essential elements in place to collect and use high-quality data.

The DQC is a national, collaborative effort that encourages and supports state policymakers to improve the availability and use of high-quality education data. This is the sixth year the DQC has measured states’ progress; its analysis reveals that states have made unprecedented improvement in collecting longitudinal information that follows individual students over time.

Missouri is one of 23 states with all 10 essential elements needed to be considered a state that provides a robust longitudinal-data system. 

“We are making tremendous progress, and we appreciate the recognition,” said Leigh Ann Grant-Engle, assistant commissioner for the Office of Data System Management.  “One of the most important aspects of school improvement and accountability is the collection and organization of student-performance data.”

Developing a strong data-management system has been a priority of the Department over the past decade, especially the past five years.  In 2005, Missouri met only two essential elements. By 2009, it met eight.  The state has now been recognized for meeting the final two elements: collecting student-level course-completion data and collecting student-level ACT, SAT and Advanced Placement exam data.

“Helping educators and school leaders have quality data to analyze and make better decisions about which practices to replicate, improve and change can maximize their efforts,” Grant-Engle said.

In addition to the data-collection system, the DQC also identifies 10 state actions needed in order to ensure effective use of data.  Missouri met four of the ten criteria in this report.

Grant-Engle said the state is making ongoing progress in its data systems to support Missouri public education reaching the top 10 by 2020. She said the Missouri Comprehensive Data Portal will be launched this year, and a new student-growth pilot project will be conducted over the next 20 months to help promote using student progress reports to improve student performance.  In addition, the Department is conducting statewide data team training, and P-20 efforts (preschool through grade 20) will continue to strengthen linkages and partnerships for effective data use.

“We have received federal grants that are helping us link our K-12 data system with higher education,” Grant-Engle said. “But, other than special projects, we do not yet systematically link with workforce data.”