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Communications Coordinator
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Vol. 45, No. 108
Dec. 1, 2011

Missouri Raises Score on National Education Data Report

Quality data can help increase student achievement

Missouri is making significant progress in developing a top-notch education data system to support student achievement, according to a national report released today.

The Data for Action 2011 report outlines efforts by all 50 states to establish a system for collecting and using data to help increase student performance. Missouri’s data system met 17 of the 20 criteria measures, an increase of three since last year's report.

The report, issued by the Data Quality Campaign, is the seventh – and final – annual survey and analysis. The criteria provide a roadmap for establishing robust state data systems, which includes the ability to collect quality data and link state K-12 data systems with early learning, postsecondary, workforce and other state agency data systems.

“Overall, we are pleased with the Data for Action report," said Leigh Ann Grant-Engle, assistant commissioner with the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. “Our data system is an important tool in our efforts to continue to improve public education in Missouri.”

In 2009, every state in the nation committed to building longitudinal data systems that contain 10 essential elements and 10 state actions to ensure effective data use.  A longitudinal system can connect education data – from preschool through college (P-20) – with workforce and economic data.

"A strong education system is essential for a strong economy and work force, so our ability to securely link our data system with information from multiple state agencies will help us better prepare students for the future," Grant-Engle said.

Missouri’s new longitudinal data capabilities allow separate systems maintained by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Department of Higher Education to connect information for insightful reports and analysis by state policymakers.  For example, statewide college-going rates by high school graduates, including subgroups, can now be reliably reported, not estimated.  The state also will be able to analyze high school course-taking patterns with success and completion of postsecondary education programs.

The Data Quality Campaign is a national collaborative, based in Washington, D.C., that encourages state policymakers to improve the availability and use of high-quality education data.