Educare schools are improving how programs use data

Early childhood professionals make hundreds of decisions every day as they support young children’s learning and development. Professionals can use data to improve the quality of their interactions and instruction—a step to closing the achievement gap for disadvantaged children.

Experts from three Educare schools are teaming up to better understand the components and experiences of data use in Educare schools. The Measuring Data Utilization project gauges how well data is being used, staff beliefs about data use and what is needed to improve the practice of data utilization. It is one of eight Acceleration Grant projects led by Educare schools and their partners, and is supported by the Buffett Early Childhood Fund.

Seeking to understand how to best support staff and schools to use data effectively

Ultimately, the project seeks to document the variations in data use to understand how to best support staff and schools to use data effectively, ethically and for the goal of improving outcomes for children, families, and staff. It builds the network’s status as a source of knowledge about data use in early education.

Through this project, local evaluation partners from Educare Tulsa, Educare Chicago and Educare Oklahoma City are working to develop a reliable and valid measure of important elements of data use. The combined measure will give information to programs and individuals about two components—tools and capacities—and two types of experiences—supports and routines—that contribute to effective data use.

This project has the potential to provide additional recommendations for best practices in use of data to both Educare schools and the broader early childhood education field.

The project was one of the Acceleration Grants highlighted at the poster session at this year’s Educare Learning Network meeting in Atlanta.

Read the literature review that informed the measure.