States must act to ensure statewide longitudinal data systems (SLDSs) meet the needs of people. Individuals, families, educators, communities, and policymakers must have access to the information they need to make decisions about their futures and support those navigating education and workforce transitions. Currently, too many states’ investments in data systems remain “on the shelf,” because data is hard to find, static, and out of date. States can lead by focusing on the important work of solving problems and providing information about journeys from education to the workforce that helps people answer their questions and make decisions. The work must start now.
Our full resource lays out what it looks like to have meaningful access to data about education and workforce pathways—for individuals, the public, and policymakers—and provides recommendations to state and federal leaders for how to get there.