The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education

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1 The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education Support Race to the Top Assessments and Student Longitudinal Systems by Harnessing the Power of WHITE PAPER

2 This document contains Confidential, Proprietary and Trade Secret Information ( Confidential Information ) of Informatica Corporation and may not be copied, distributed, duplicated, or otherwise reproduced in any manner without the prior written consent of Informatica. While every attempt has been made to ensure that the information in this document is accurate and complete, some typographical errors or technical inaccuracies may exist. Informatica does not accept responsibility for any kind of loss resulting from the use of information contained in this document. The information contained in this document is subject to change without notice. The incorporation of the product attributes discussed in these materials into any release or upgrade of any Informatica software product as well as the timing of any such release or upgrade is at the sole discretion of Informatica. Protected by one or more of the following U.S. Patents: 6,032,158; 5,794,246; 6,014,670; 6,339,775; 6,044,374; 6,208,990; 6,208,990; 6,850,947; 6,895,471; or by the following pending U.S. Patents: 09/644,280; 10/966,046; 10/727,700. This edition published January 2013

3 White Paper Table of Contents Executive Summary....2 The K-12 Educational Challenges...3 Step 1: Capture...4 Step 2: Link...4 Step 3: Provide....4 Step 4: Analyze...5 The Informatica Platform...5 Enterprise Integration for Capturing and Integrating...6 Master Management for Linking....6 Access for Providing....6 Quality for Cleansing...6 The Informatica Platform in Action...7 Race to the Top Assessment: Georgia Office of Student Achievement...7 Student Longitudinal Systems: Colorado Governor s Office of Information Technology and the Colorado Department of Education....8 No Child Left Behind: Fairfax County Public Schools...9 Conclusion The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education: Support Race to the Top Assessments and Student Longitudinal Systems by Harnessing the Power of 1

4 Executive Summary In partnership with state education agencies, the United States Department of Education has laid out four main objectives to guide investment in the coming years: If we want America to lead in the 21st century, nothing is more important than giving everyone the best education possible from the day they start preschool to the day they start their career. President Barack Obama Weekly Radio and Internet Address, August 18, Higher educational standards and an improved system of assessment that will help students achieve success in college and in their careers 2. Strong efforts to recruit, train, and develop teachers and principals, specifically in classrooms, where they are needed most 3. Improved data systems to gauge the growth rate and academic potential of students that enable educators to enhance instruction 4. The identification of low-achieving institutions and efforts to turn them around Two key programs are emerging as successful best practices for achieving K-12 education improvement goals: 1. Authorized under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), the Race to the Top Assessment seeks to develop assessments that are valid, support and inform instruction, provide accurate information about what students know and can do, and measure student achievement against standards designed to ensure that all students gain the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in college and the workplace. 2. The Statewide Longitudinal Systems (SLDS) Grant Program, as authorized by the Educational Technical Assistance Act of 2002, provides grants to states to design, develop, and implement statewide P-20 longitudinal data systems to capture, analyze, and use student data from preschool to high school, college, and the workforce. These systems are intended to enhance states ability to efficiently and accurately manage, analyze, and use education data, including individual student records. At the heart of both programs is the need for state education agencies to capture, correlate, aggregate, analyze, and distribute data from disparate sources, in various formats, in such a way as to enable better decision making and improve educational outcomes. Further, state education agencies need to simplify reporting, increase transparency, and protect privacy of all students. And they must do this with very limited budgets. This white paper outlines the strategic data process flow that forward-looking state education agencies are using to meet K-12 educational data challenges. It describes how the Informatica Platform, the industry-leading enterprise data integration platform, captures and links data in disparate systems, in different formats, and across multiple agencies and then makes integrated available data for analysis. It provides real-world examples of how the Informatica Platform is being used by state agencies nationwide to support the Race to the Top, SDLS, and other educational improvement initiatives. 2

5 The K-12 Educational Challenges Why do some students prosper and others struggle? The answer is in the data. Educators are betting heavily on the use of data to uncover relationships and patterns hidden in a mountain of information and use those insights to: Make better decisions for and in the classroom Identify potential high-risk students Analyze performance trends Drive improvements in curriculum, delivery, and measurement State education agencies must efficiently and accurately collect, analyze, interpret, and securely distribute a staggering amount of data. This data is not limited to simply individual student records at the individual school, school district, or college level. It extends far and wide throughout different state agencies, ranging from departments of education and higher education, health and human services, labor, and corrections. Policymakers need timely, accurate, and comprehensive data, but data is not easily or readily shared among state agencies or at any level of government. As a result, there are barriers to collaboration that prevent state agencies from being able to evaluate and improve existing programs, create new programs and services, reduce waste, and increase efficiency. The challenge is to capture and link multiple data points that reside in disparate systems and in different formats to create a much more comprehensive and meaningful view of students, faculty, and schools to positively impact outcomes and improve service delivery. Forward-thinking state education agencies are implementing a strategic data process flow that captures, links, and provides data to systems where the integrated data can be analyzed (see Figures 1 and 2). Step 1: Capture Collect Cleanse Integrate Step 2: Link Organize Match Step 3: Provide Present Distribute Step 4: Analyze Use for Analysis Figure 1: State educational agencies are implementing a process data flow to create a much more comprehensive and meaningful view of students, faculty, and schools to positively impact outcomes and improve service delivery. The blue steps are enabled by a data integration platform; the green step is enabled by an analytics platform. The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education: Support Race to the Top Assessments and Student Longitudinal Systems by Harnessing the Power of 3

6 Step 1: Capture Step 2: Link Step 3: Provide Step 4: Analyze State Systems PCHEES OSPI DEL SBCTC DOL DOC Federal Systems K-12 School Higher Education Student MDM Repository Department of Corrections Teacher Social Services Local School District State Agency P-20 Warehouse Federal Agency P-20 Warehouse NCS External Systems SBCTC DOC Figure 2: This process data flow captures and links multiple data points that reside in disparate systems and in different formats and provides integrated data for analysis. The blue steps are enabled by a data integration platform; the green step is enabled by an analytics platform. Let s examine each step in the strategic data process flow. Step 1: Capture Student information, programmatic classifications, educator quality, and other P-20-related data must be collected from multiple data sources to establish an inventory of data that spans pre-school through postsecondary education and includes workforce outcomes. The captured data must be accurate, complete, and current. Step 2: Link must be linked across disparate data sets and among state education and other agencies that collect data relevant to P-20 student performance. Such agencies include departments of higher education, health and human services, labor and employment, public safety, and corrections. Educator characteristics, evaluations, preparation, development, and individual student performance must be linked. A unique statewide or education-specific system of identification must be built, and this system should cross-reference unique identifiers established by various state agencies and systems. Duplicates should be removed and identity issues should be resolved. Step 3: Provide To promote accountability, inform policy, and ensure a holistic view of student success, linked data must be shared and exchanged among multiple agencies, at the local district, state, and federal levels. State agencies must provide access to the captured and linked data for example, via Web portals. They must present findings to all stakeholders in a meaningful, secure, and useful format, while protecting student and family privacy. Access to relevant, timely, and reliable educational data is critical to generating relevant and accurate research data sets and to complying with federal and state reporting requirements. 4

7 Step 4: Analyze Finally, state agencies must use this holistic data for predictive and diagnostic analysis. With data that is comprehensive, trustworthy, actionable, and authoritative, state agencies can: Identify common factors, characteristics, and other data points to pinpoint performance problems, diagnose at-risk students, and improve curriculum Predict outcomes based on trends, data patterns, and the ability to link multiyear data Improve decision making The Informatica Platform With the Informatica Platform, agencies can create a comprehensive view of the student and overall educational performance. With the Informatica Platform, IT organizations in state education agencies can support current and future demands for comprehensive, reliable educational data and do so cost-effectively. The Informatica Platform is ideal for capturing and linking educational data, regardless of its format or source, and providing access to data for analysis (see Figure 3). Self-service tools empower educational and oversight analysts to access data themselves, freeing IT resources to focus on more complex data integration tasks. Step 1: Capture Step 2: Link Organize Match Step 3: Provide Present Distribute Step 4: Analyze Use for Analysis Enterprise Integration Master Management Enterprise Integration Access Integrate Create a Single View of Resolve Identity Issues Integrate Quality Profile Cleanse The Informatica Platform Analytics Platform Figure 3: The Informatica Platform captures and links multiple data points that reside in disparate systems and in different formats and provides integrated data for analysis. The Informatica Platform is a comprehensive, open, unified, and economical data integration platform that: Accesses data from new and legacy applications Transforms and combines disparate data for use in analytic applications Applies powerful data quality processes and logic to ensure that data is complete, accurate, and trustworthy at every step The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education: Support Race to the Top Assessments and Student Longitudinal Systems by Harnessing the Power of 5

8 Let s dive deeper into the key capabilities of the Informatica Platform. Enterprise Integration for Capturing and Integrating Enterprise data integration capabilities are the foundation of the Informatica Platform. The Platform accesses, integrates, and delivers data of any volume, for any application, from virtually any source, in any format, at any latency. The Platform is fully scalable, which means that it is easy to add more data sources as agencies are brought on board. Armed with these capabilities, IT organizations can break down the silos wherever data is held and enable seamless data sharing across multiple state agencies and commissions. Master Management for Linking The Informatica Platform s master data management (MDM) capabilities create a single, trusted view of all educational data. Master data is mission-critical, operational data such as data on students, teachers, schools, districts, and more including the relationships among these entities. The Informatica Platform empowers state agencies to create, consume, manage, and monitor master data, as well as maintain full and accurate records and keep those records confidential, secure, and accurate. The Platform uniquely identifies all master data and provides unparalleled visibility into the relationships among data even when that data is stored in different formats and multiple systems or is from another country or in another language. It uses logic to emulate an expert s ability to match data across many attributes. The Platform supports highly flexible search strategies and includes high-quality data search-and-match capabilities for any type of name or address. Smart indexing identifies and resolves errors and variations in identity data. The Informatica Platform s MDM capabilities are truly multidomain to support the P-20 mission. They transform inconsistent, duplicate, and conflicting data into the single best version of the truth a golden record for state education agencies. Access for Providing The Informatica Platform provides secure access to any data source and to all agency databases. It supports any reporting tool. It creates a common, trusted view of data across applications and systems. It also insulates agencies from ongoing changes to applications and systems by providing a central place to enforce security, service level agreements, and compliance. By enabling greater access to educational data, the Informatica Platform helps state agencies operate more transparently. Quality for Cleansing Poor data quality is a pervasive problem that plagues educators, administrators, and IT organizations across agencies. quality problems cost taxpayers millions and introduce unnecessary risk. The Informatica Platform finds and fixes data quality problems wherever they are to ensure the quality of data entering the P-20 data warehouse. The Platform profiles data, identifies data anomalies, creates and validates data quality rules, and cleanses and standardizes data. It delivers pervasive data quality to all stakeholders, projects, and data domains for all projects and applications on premise or in the cloud. 6

9 The Informatica Platform in Action Here are three examples of the Informatica Platform in action in supporting Race to the Top Assessments, Student Longitudinal Systems, and other K-12 educational initiatives. Race to the Top Assessment: Georgia Office of Student Achievement The State of Georgia was awarded $400 million over four years to implement a robust statewide education reform strategy that involves: Creating common standards of performance in English language arts and mathematics for grades K-12 Recruiting, preparing, rewarding, and retaining effective teachers and principals, especially where they are needed most Providing seamless access to robust and comprehensive data on student and teacher performance throughout the pre-k-12 and college experience Implementing a school intervention model to create radical change at 40 middle and high schools that are considered persistently lowest-achieving based on historical student achievement and student need To support the reforms, the Georgia Office of Student Achievement (GOSA) is implementing a statewide data systems initiative. A data warehouse, known as the State Longitudinal System (SLDS), is being developed to host data across the P-20 spectrum. The SLDS will support statistical and business intelligence tools as well as reporting. GOSA found that data in the SLDS was not always reliable. It was frequently incorrect, out of date, or incomplete. The hand-coded process for matching and analyzing data was timeconsuming, and, as a result, did not always occur. More time was spent tinkering with the process than on using and acting on the data. Maintenance was also cumbersome. GOSA needed to maintain standard data as seven different inputs change over time. By reducing redundant data and improving the quality and accuracy of data, providing a clear understanding of data ownership, and increasing transparency, the Georgia Office of Student Achievement is positively impacting student performance and achievement. Kriste Elia Student Longitudinal System Director, State of Georgia Governor s Office of Student Achievement GOSA is using the Informatica Platform to build a person master index that links together individual profile information (e.g., students and education personnel) and generates a unique identifier to drive better student and institutional performance. The Informatica Platform is helping GOSA to: Remove redundant data and improve the quality and accuracy of data Clearly outline the terms of data ownership Trace data over time and increase transparency Increase confidence in the data used in decision making The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education: Support Race to the Top Assessments and Student Longitudinal Systems by Harnessing the Power of 7

10 The Informatica Platform is helping to improve education outcomes and progress college and career readiness. The technology is creating order out of chaos, and helping us to examine areas of education where we never believed we could get answers. Dan Domagala Student Longitudinal Systems: Colorado Governor s Office of Information Technology and the Colorado Department of Education The Colorado Governor s Office of Information Technology in collaboration with the Colorado Department of Education has embarked on an ambitious program called Relative Information to Strengthen Education (RISE). One of the main objectives of RISE is to extend the current K-12 SLDS to P-20 to help transform education across the state by improving access to data for more meaningful analytics. Essential to the success of RISE is an equally ambitious project to apply master data management principles and technologies to enable sharing of trusted data across multiple state departments and agencies to support data-driven decisionmaking for education leaders. The Colorado Department of Education relies on the Informatica Platform to support its SLDS program. With the Informatica Platform, this agency can identify, cleanse, and join identity data about citizens and share that data seamlessly across multiple state agencies and commissions. This single, trusted view of citizen data empowers the Colorado Department of Education to enhance academic success and education outcomes while reducing the cost of data. Chief Information Officer, Colorado Department of Education 8

11 No Child Left Behind: Fairfax County Public Schools The school district of Fairfax County, Virginia developed the Education Decision Support Library (EDSL), a comprehensive repository of educational information used to assess student achievement, refine educational strategies, and allocate resources effectively. EDSL helps the school district to provide immediate access to high quality data and to improve learning, decision-making, and compliance reporting. Due to its tremendous success, Fairfax County Public Schools offers offering EDSL to school districts across the country to help schools comply with the federally mandated No Child Left Behind Act. EDSL relies on the Informatica Platform to capture, transform, and load operational data from various transaction-based application systems and testing services into an integrated, enterprise data warehouse. To facilitate use of the data captured, EDSL offers dashboards, predefined reports, and other analytic and publishing capabilities. As an enterprise business intelligence solution, EDSL provides a means for teachers, assessment coaches, principals, educational specialists, and administrators to analyze a wealth of current and historical data regarding instruction delivered, programs offered, enrollment demographics, and student performance. With EDSL, school district employees do not have to expend an inordinate amount of time and effort to seek, gather, and merge data from various application sources in order to make informed decisions. To ensure an ongoing effective return on the school district s investments in data and business intelligence technologies, the Informatica Platform will continue to play an integral role in our strategies. Ed Tyler Manager, Services, Fairfax County Public Schools Powered by the Informatica Platform, ESDL enables: Informed learning. The Informatica Platform powers EDSL s Electronic Curriculum Assessment Resource Tool (ecart), which provides teachers and administrators with access to relevant curriculum resources, formative assessments, and instructional tools to support informed learning. ecart enables teachers and administrators to identify curriculum areas that require additional instruction, foster collaboration regarding instructional strategies, and support administrative decisions that affect the allocation of resources. Informed decision-making. With fully integrated data, Fairfax County Public Schools administrators can accurately analyze district trends, such as in enrollment, which in turn enables better-informed educational, financial, and resource-allocation decisions. Efficient compliance reporting. By providing access to trusted, timely, and comprehensive data through EDSL, the Informatica Platform helps Fairfax County Public Schools ensure that it complies with reporting mandates efficiently. The Informatica Platform in K-12 Education: Support Race to the Top Assessments and Student Longitudinal Systems by Harnessing the Power of 9

12 Conclusion About Informatica Informatica Corporation (NASDAQ: INFA) is the world s number one independent provider of data integration software. Organizations around the world rely on Informatica for maximizing return on data to drive their top business imperatives. Worldwide, over 4,630 enterprises depend on Informatica to fully leverage their information assets residing on-premise, in the Cloud and across social networks. The Race to the Top Assessment and the Statewide Longitudinal Systems (SLDS) Grant Program require education agencies to collect, analyze, interpret, and securely distribute a staggering amount of data scattered across different applications and systems and among different state agencies. The lack of timely, accurate, and comprehensive data creates barriers to collaboration that prevent state agencies from being able to evaluate and improve existing programs, create new programs and services, reduce waste, and increase efficiency. By linking multiple data points that reside in disparate systems and in different formats, state agencies can create a much more comprehensive and meaningful view of students, faculty, and schools to positively impact outcomes and provide improved and more efficient services. The Informatica Platform, the industry-leading enterprise data integration platform, captures, links, and provides data to systems where the integrated data can be analyzed. State agencies all over the country are using the Informatica Platform to support Race to the Top Assessments and the SLDS Grant Program by harnessing the power of data. With data that is comprehensive, trustworthy, actionable, and authoritative, state agencies can: Improve decision-making and educational outcomes Simplify reporting and ensure compliance Increase transparency Protect privacy of all of students 10

13 Worldwide Headquarters, 100 Cardinal Way, Redwood City, CA 94063, USA phone: fax: toll-free in the US: informatica.com linkedin.com/company/informatica twitter.com/informaticacorp 2013 Informatica Corporation. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A. Informatica, the Informatica logo, and The Integration Company are trademarks or registered trademarks of Informatica Corporation in the United States and in jurisdictions throughout the world. All other company and product names may be trade names or trademarks of their respective owners. IN09_0113_02302

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