ESSA Resources to Make Data Work for Students

Federal Policy
ESSA Resources to Make Data Work for Students

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) charged states with developing high-quality education goals that further the outcomes of all students. Regardless of the goals outlined in your state’s ESSA plan, data is needed to measure progress and identify best practices. DQC created a series of resources that shine a light on how states can use data to meet these different education goals and support student success.

Build Better Report Cards

Only a few states have provided families and communities with a report card that demonstrates student and school progress in clear language with useful context. States should take advantage of the data they are already collecting and make that information more accessible and meaningful.

Combat Achievement and Opportunity Gaps

ESSA charges states to highlight and act on inequities at every level of the education system. States should strive to go farther than the requirements of the law to better serve every student.

  • Shining a Light on Equity spotlights how states have successfully used data to address performance gaps, and helps educators and leaders ensure that all students have the support they need.

Work Across Sectors to Better Support Students

  • Roadmap for Cross-Agency Data Governance breaks down the first step states must take to ensure secure cross-agency data sharing is possible: the development of a high-quality data governance structure.
  • Roadmap for Foster Care and K–12 Data Linkagesdemonstrates the importance of data sharing between child welfare and education agencies to better coordinate and target student services. These data linkages are also the first step in meeting ESSA’s new foster care reporting requirements.
  • Roadmap for K–12 and Workforce Data Linkages explores how states can ensure students transitioning out of high school are trained with the skills needed to meet job demands.
  • Thinking beyond the School Day explores how states can leverage ESSA to strengthen data-driven partnerships between schools and out-of-school time (OST) programs. Community partners are important stakeholders in student success and partnerships between OST programs and schools can improve student outcomes both inside and outside of the classroom.

Put a Learner-Ready Teacher in Every Classroom

Use Research and Evidence in Service of Student Learning

ESSA provides states with the flexibility to choose the types of evidence that best help them identify and invest in resources and interventions suited to their communities’ needs. States can and should build research-practice partnerships that help leaders at every level answer critical education questions and identify which policies lead to greater outcomes for students.

Increasing Graduation Rates—and Ensuring It’s Based on Quality Data

Sealing the Cracks: Using Graduation Data, Policy, and Practice to Keep All Kids on Track discusses how to improve the quality and comparability of graduation data, which builds trust and utility in this information to ultimately help more students graduate.

Shine a Light on School Spending

Using Financial Data to Support Student Success breaks down the steps states can take to meet ESSA’s fiscal transparency requirements and improve transparency with the public.