In order to foster success among students, school administrators should be well-versed in data literacy, according to a new brief by the Data Quality Campaign, an education nonprofit.
The report from the Washington, D.C.-based organization, which advocates for the use of data in education, argues that school and district administrators need to be able to collect, analyze and use data to make decisions that will ultimately improve outcomes for students.
“Though administrators may not work directly with students in the classroom, they must still share the goal of using data as a tool to improve students’ academic outcomes,” the brief reads.
The Data Quality Campaign argues that data-literate administrators — those who can effectively and ethically access and use data to improve outcomes for all students in an appropriate manner — should be able to leverage both academic and administrative data from local, district, state and federal levels.
When addressing how state policymakers can best support administrator data literacy, the report points to three key areas: promoting data-use skills, ensuring ease of access and safeguarding student data.
“States, districts and schools will never fully realize their goals for continuous improvement — and improved outcomes for students — unless administrators know how to use data to take action and inform decision making. More must be done, especially at the state policy level, to ensure that administrators are data literate,” the report concluded.