Grants for Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems

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1 Washington s Application: Grants for Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 Purpose The Education Research and Data Center (ERDC) has developed this concept paper to outline our initial thinking on the work to be proposed as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Grants for Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS). The deadline for proposal submissions is November 19, Background The U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences (IES) has released a request for applications (RFA) for Grants for Statewide, Longitudinal Data Systems under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of The ERDC will be the lead entity in the development of the application from the state of Washington, which will be submitted by the designated State Education Agency (SEA), the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). The LDS grants will support the expansion and/or improvement of existing systems that have the capacity to link individual student data across time and across databases, including the matching of teachers to students, promote the linking of data collected or held by various institutions, agencies, and States, and protect student privacy consistent with applicable privacy protection laws. The longitudinal data systems should include education data from preschool through postsecondary, and workforce information such as employment, wage, and earnings data should be incorporated. These systems should support activities that inform policy and practice. Implementation activities are to include training, technical assistance, analyses, and feedback reporting. The Education Research and Data Center was created in the Office of Financial Management (OFM) by the 2007 legislature and operates jointly with the Legislative Evaluation and Accountability Program (LEAP). The ERDC is charged with analyses of early learning, K-12, higher education, and workforce issues spanning the P-20 system, which includes all state education agencies plus the Employment Security Department. Research on student transitions within and among the education sectors and the workforce is also a focus of the ERDC. The 2009 Legislature, in ESHB 2261, directed the ERDC along with OSPI to seek federal funding in support of these activities. Project Description Grants awarded will support development and implementation of systems. Grant funding is not to be used to support ongoing maintenance of data systems, so activities proposed must be sustainable after 3 years of federal funding concludes. 1

2 Goals and Objectives/Research Questions The goal of the project is to develop a P-20 education and workforce data system that will allow interested parties to efficiently address topics such as: Effectiveness of particular instructional programs (preschool, primary and secondary) on success in subsequent grades and in postsecondary activities. Influence of high school course-taking patterns on postsecondary completion. Workforce participation by enrolled students (K-12 and postsecondary). Characteristics (type of endorsement, teaching experience, education, workforce status, employment and earnings) of credentialed teachers who leave the teaching workforce. The extent to which students are working at a job while attending school. Progress of adult learners entering postsecondary education after age 30. And routinely answer questions such as: How do participants in the state-funded early learning programs fare in the K-12 system? At what rate do high school graduates (or dropouts) attend Washington higher education institutions within one year of leaving high school? Two years? What is the impact of modified graduation requirements on student success in postsecondary activities? What is the predictive power of college entrance examination scores and other high school indicators on students success in postsecondary activities? What happens to high school dropouts? What are completion rates and time to degree for various categories of students? Is receipt of financial aid related to time to degree? Did students who were eligible for free-or reduced-price lunch in high school apply for financial aid? The system will depend heavily on input from existing data systems associated with specific sectors of education within the state: the Comprehensive Education Data and Research System (CEDARS) unit record system for K-12 students maintained by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Student Information System of the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC), and the Public Centralized Higher Education Enrollment System (PCHEES) maintained by the Office of Financial Management and jointly owned by the Higher Education Coordinating Board. OSPI is a current recipient of an IES grant to support CEDARS. Many of the required capabilities and data elements outlined in this ARRA RFA are very specific to K-12 data. We feel that CEDARS and the proposed ERDC system, which contains data extracted from CEDARS, will jointly meet the required capabilities and data elements outlined in the RFA (see Appendix A). Pure K- 2

3 12 requirements will be satisfied by CEDARS while requirements for cross-sector linking will be handled by the ERDC data system. Anticipated Outcomes The RFA emphasizes that the proposal be built around outcomes. The project outcomes should be clearly defined and expressed as products with benchmarks that can be measured at the end of the grant period. Our proposed project will have products that fall into two general areas: 1) SLEDS Data Warehouse Development of Washington s Statewide Longitudinal Educational Data System (SLEDS), a dimensional data warehouse that consolidates education and workforce data managed separately by multiple state agencies into a single integrated source of longitudinal information about education activities and outcomes. See Appendix B for a diagram of the SLEDS data network. 2) Reports and Research Datasets Generated from SLEDS We will work with partner agencies and other interested parties to develop a set of standard products. They will be designed to inform policy and practice within the education systems and to allow researchers to conduct longitudinal studies across sectors. Some of these reports will take the form of feedback reports providing summary information back to schools and colleges about student outcomes. Standard products will also include research datasets that will allow researchers efficient access to longitudinal data. Along with partner agencies and institutions, we plan to identify and disseminate information of interest to a wide audience, including parents, teachers, school administrators, students, policy-makers, and the general public. Maintaining student privacy will be a critical element of the system; applicable privacy laws will be followed at all times. Implementation of the system will include not only the data system itself and standard customer-oriented reports and datasets, but also outreach and training activities so that all interested parties can make maximum use of the information generated by the system. Review Criteria The review criteria for the proposal include: Substantial need for the project Clear goals and appropriate and measurable outcomes High-quality, logical, and feasible activities and timeline Effective management and governance plan Personnel and financial resources. More detailed descriptions of the criteria are in Appendix C. 3

4 Resources ERDC website: NCES information on Longitudinal Data Systems Grant Program, including a link to the RFA: Data Quality Campaign information ARRA funding for Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems: OSPI information on CEDARS: Contact Information Education Research & Data Center P.O. Box Olympia, WA contact is preferred; however, if you would like to talk to someone in person, please call (360) and say that you are calling about the SLDS grant. You will be asked to leave your name and contact information and someone will return your call as soon as possible. Key to Acronyms ARRA - American Recovery and Reinvestment Act CEDARS Comprehensive Education Data and Research System, the OSPI student, teacher, and course information system DEL Department of Early Learning, a Washington state agency ECEAP Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program, a Washington state-funded early learning program ERDC Education Research and Data Center ESHB Engrossed Substitute House Bill HECB Higher Education Coordinating Board, a Washington state agency IES Institute of Education Sciences, an office within the U.S. Department of Education K-12 Kindergarten through 12 th grade LEAP Legislative Evaluation and Accountability Program, a Washington state agency NCES National Center for Education Statistics, a component of IES within the U.S. Department of Education OFM Office of Financial Management, a Washington state agency OSPI Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Washington s K-12 State Education Agency P-20 Pre-Kindergarten through postsecondary education P-20/W P-20 plus workforce PCHEES Public Centralized Higher Education Enrollment System PESC Postsecondary Electronic Standards Council RFA Request for Applications SAT Scholastic Aptitude Test SBCTC State Board for Community and Technical Colleges, a Washington state agency SEA State Education Agency, defined by the U.S. Department of Education as the agency primarily responsible for the state supervision of elementary schools and secondary schools SFSF State Fiscal Stabilization Funds SIFA - Schools Interoperability Framework Association SLDS Statewide, Longitudinal Data Systems SLEDS Statewide Longitudinal Education Data System (Washington s version of a SLDS) 4

5 Appendix A: Required capabilities and data elements of the system, specified in the Request for Applications Required capabilities Must include individual-level data from preschool through postsecondary and workforce Must facilitate and enable the exchange of data among agencies within the state and between states utilizing standard data structures, formats, and data definitions Must link student data with teachers and must match teachers with certifications and teacher preparation programs Must allow data to be easily generated, such as timely reporting to parents, teachers, and school leaders around student achievement Must ensure the quality and integrity of system data Must facilitate the ability of the state to meet reporting requirements of ED, including metrics for SFSF and ED Facts Comment ERDC system will contain data for individuals that links education activities and workforce information The ERDC system will be designed to support the exchange of data using standard formats (NCES, SIFA, PESC) The ERDC system, using teacher-student-class data from CEDARS will also have the capability of linking teachers to subsequent workforce activities Routine reports and datasets are part of the ERDC plan, as well as the capability to efficiently satisfy ad hoc reporting and analysis The ERDC system will depend on data validation done within the sectors, but will add additional data quality checks on the system as a whole This appears to be solely a CEDARS function. Required data elements (America COMPETES) P-20 K-12 Postsecondary Unique student identifier Student level enrollment, demographic and program participation information Student level exit, transfer, dropout, or continuation to postsecondary institution Ability to communicate with postsecondary data systems State data audit system assessing data quality, validity, and reliability Yearly individual student test records Information on students not tested by grade and subject Teacher identifier with ability to match teachers to students Student-level transcript information including courses completed and grades earned Student-level college readiness test scores Data on student transitions to postsecondary including information on remedial coursework Additional data necessary to address preparation and alignment for student success in postsecondary education Comment The ERDC assigns an internal unique identifier to individuals in the system that allows records for an individual to be linked across all P-20 sectors including workforce. Available at all levels in the proposed ERDC system CEDARS will provide status relative to the K-12 system. ERDC system links to postsecondary status for K-12 students. ERDC will link ECEAP students to K-12. Accomplished by ERDC-developed linkages. Incorporated into CEDARS data warehouse. Available within CEDARS. Teacher certification number currently in use plus teachercourse-student linkages within CEDARS. CEDARS SAT scores available from OSPI. ERDC system links K-12 students with postsecondary outcomes including enrollment in remedial courses. Additional information (e.g., progress and completion within postsecondary education) available in ERDC system. 5

6 Appendix B: Diagram of SLEDS Data Network 6

7 Appendix C: Review criteria Substantial need for the project. Clearly describes the status of the state s longitudinal data system and demonstrates that the system lacks one or more required capabilities and/or several essential elements. It provides a convincing case that the project is necessary to accelerate the state s development and implementation of a longitudinal data system. Failure to meet the goals outlined for the project would seriously threaten or impede significant state progress toward establishment and use of an effective, statewide, longitudinal data system. Clear goals and appropriate and measurable outcomes. The goals of the project are clearly articulated and demonstrate a commitment to creating a robust system that includes the seven required capabilities and 12 required elements, and supports transparency, accountability and improvement. Proposed outcomes relate directly and logically to the stated needs with respect to both data system requirements and implementation. The application clearly describes measurable or observable outcomes that will be accomplished by the end of the grant. The outcomes include not only the required system capabilities and the required data elements, but also promote effective use of the system. High-quality, logical, and feasible activities and timeline. The project activities are reasonable and well designed to achieve project goals. Proposed collaborations will promote efficiency. The timeline clearly describes work that logically will lead to accomplishment of the proposed outcomes. The work appears feasible in terms of the state s current status. Effective management and governance plan. The management plan demonstrates that there will be sufficient administrative oversight and controls to enable the work to proceed on time, as planned, and within budget. The governance plan describes an active partnership between K-12 and higher education agencies and with other agencies and institutions responsible for data included in the statewide data system Appropriate parties will be involved to promote the use of the system to support reform and accountability. The plans describe any new staffing required to provide useful data back to school districts, schools, and teachers. Personnel and financial resources. The project personnel have the qualifications and time commitment needed to implement the project within the proposed project period. Qualifications and duties of new hires are clearly described. Proposed budget and budget justification are reasonable in terms of the activities to be carried out and commensurate with the proposed outcomes and goals of the project. 7

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