Spring Data Conference, May 5-6, 2011


Date: May 5-6, 2011

Time: 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Location: Nebo Learning Center

570 South Main, Springville, Utah 84663

Phone: (801) 489-2833

The purpose of this meeting is to facilitate cooperation and coordination among the Utah State Office of Education (USOE), districts and charter schools to further the efficient, accurate and timely exchange of school performance data. This agenda and all the information presented during data meetings will be available on the USOE Information Technology website.


Thursday, May 5, 2011

8 a.m.

Continental Breakfast - Networking

8:30 a.m.

Technical Clearinghouse File Specifications Changes for EOY 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 - Bruce Hudgens



Related Clearinghouse Content/Program/Processing Information.

Race and Ethnicity – Jennifer Lambert

  • Until the USOE receives other instructions it will allow Hispanic = “Y” without one of the five race values being designated.
  • Not indicating a race for Hispanic/Latino students should be the exception, not the rule. Schools (secretaries/registrars) should do all that they can to gather the race for Hispanic/Latino students. The relaxation of the rule allows them to have the time to do so.
  • If the USOE finds that the relaxing of the edit check is being misused and that LEAs are not seeking to identify the race for Hispanic/Latino students, the edit may be added back in.
  • If the race for Hispanic/Latino students must be observer identified, schools (not IT) must follow the procedures outlined for observer identification.
  • Please note that if Hispanic/Latino students are observer identified as American Indian, it may cause extra work for Title VII. However, there may be situations where the observer identification of American Indian would be the most appropriate (for example, if prior to the introduction of the two-part ethnicity/race question, the student self-identified as American Indian).
  • If a student or their parent self-identifies their race as American Indian, accept that designation and in no way dissuade that choice or change it.
  • For the future: In order to be able to better distinguish American Indian students, USOE plans to add another Tribal Affiliation, to the effect of “Not a Member of a Federally Recognized Tribe”. We are waiting on final guidance from Title VII on the verbiage.

Special Education/SCRAM Changes for 2011/12 including Pre-School – Bruce Hudgens, Travis Cook

There will be new codes for pre-K special education students in 2011-12.

For 2010-11 there will be a small change in the Clearinghouse. 

@Regular Percent: (Col 037; Required – All updates) - Summarizes the amount of time the student is in a regular education class. This is used for federal reporting.

Code Meaning

  • 1. At least 80% of the day.
  • 2. 40 to 79% of the day.
  • 3. Less than 40% of day.


  • Student is pre-K and Environment is not ‘E’, Cannot be Blank for all students above pre-k or
  • Pre-k students with Environment ‘E’, Must be Blank for pre-k students with Environment anything other than ‘E’.

Note: If the student is pre-k with an Environment of ‘E’ and a code of 1 in Regular Percent they will be interpreted as more than 10 hours of self-contained instruction per week; codes 2 and 3 will be interpreted as 10 hours or less of self-contained instruction per week. 

 9 a. m.

Creating and Closing Schools - Emily Tew

There is now an online form to request a new school. The USOE will review the new form with LEAs and stress the need for completeness, accuracy, and timeliness. 

 9:15 a.m.

Read Grade Level and Reading Intervention Clearinghouse Fields - John Jesse or John Brandt

The new Read Grade Level field in the Clearinghouse is for reporting ONLY the mid-year (2-15-2011) test (DIBELS) outcome. In addition, third graders will take an end-of-year DIBELS test. LEAs will use a separate supplemental spreadsheet to report those results, specifically the reading on grade level and possibly the DIBELS level

Read Grade Level: (Col 209 ; Required at year end for grades 1 - 3)

For grades 1, 2, and 3 indicate if the student is reading on grade level. This is the mid-year designation, not where the student is at year end.

Code Meaning 

  • Y-Yes  - Student was enrolled in grade 1, 2, or 3 and was designated as “At or Above Grade Level” at the mid-year designation
  • N - No  - Student was enrolled in grades 1-3 and was designated as “Below Grade Level” at the mid-year designation
  • U - Untested  - Student was enrolled in grade 1, 2, or 3 but was not given a mid-year grade level reading at grade level designation. This usually means the student was not given a mid-year designation because he/she was not enrolled during the January testing window
  • Blank - Not enrolled in grade 1, 2, or 3 (can be BLANK for grade 1-3 if update is not year end)

Note: All students in grade 1, 2, or 3 who were enrolled in the month of January should have a ‘Y’ or ‘N’ designation. In other words, if the student was not given the DIBELS due to severe disability or because they did not read English, or for any other reason, they must still be given a Yes or No designation (usually ‘No”, of course)

For questions regarding use of this data element, please contact reed [dot] spencer [at] schools [dot] utah [dot] gov (Reed Spencer), (801) 538-7893.

Reading Intervention: is the indication of whether the student was given reading interventions at any time during the school year.

  • Y = Yes. This means the student did receive reading interventions.
  • N = No. This means the student did not receive reading interventions.

Note: This field is completed for all students, whether the student was designated as: “Below Grade Level”, “At or Above Grade Level” or “Untested”. In other words, some students will receive interventions during the school year but may not be below grade level in reading.

The USOE has modified the 2010-11 Clearinghouse specification to collect the mid-year reading fields.

The USOE has written instructions for the construction and submission of a temporary (2010-11) spreadsheet for the submission of end-of-year results of the third grade reading tests.

FYI – LEA IT staffs may be asked to help curriculum/assessment directors prepare an aggregate spreadsheet due July 15, 2011 based on the individual data described above. The LEA ELL director is to submit this document directly to Reed Spencer at the USOE.

9:45 a.m.

SERF Changes 2010-2011 - Robert Nicholson

  • Presentation
  • SERF Basics
  • SERF Change Schedule for 2010-2011
  • File size limits
  • Timing of SERF releases and change notifications
  • New/changed table/element definitions
  • Request process, releases, acknowledged/signed-off 

10:15 a.m.

CBT/CRT and Other Assessment Updates – Sharon Marsh, Julie Quinn

Secure Testing Website


How they work together:

New specs will be communicated by 8/1/10 first to be used for spring 2011 CRT pre-prints.

  • Presentation 
  • Error files are put on the secure Assessment page under Downloads “Raw/Error/Extracts”.
  • There is a section of the website labeled “Correct Errors”.
  • Be sure to “close the session” when you are done correcting errors, this signals USOE to rerun error checks to ensure you’ve corrected everything.
  • Pre-print, Pre-load and All-Student file format and timelines
  • Assessment Website/MoveIT permission and forms
  • UALPA processing 

Frequently Asked Questions. Sharon and Julie will go over a bunch of commonly seen student data issues and how to resolve them.

Standard usage of the 9.2 fields

Beginning in the 2011-2012 school year the USOE recommends (but does not mandate) assessment’s pre-print/pre-load files’ 9 character part of the 9.2 ID field be a teacher’s of record CACTUS ID. In the future this CACTUS ID will be validated against the CACTUS database to verify it is for a current teacher in the school indicated in the record. In addition, this CACTUS ID may also be validated against the school’s class rosters to see if the teacher with that CACTUS ID is the teacher of record for the student being tested and that the test was required for the subject/course being taught.

The 2-character part of this legacy field can be used as the LEA sees fit. In most cases it will be a two character period number or a one character term number followed by a one character period number. This splitting of the two-character field has been suggested as a way to separate multiple classes being taught by the same teacher during the same period but in different terms. It has proven to be beneficial in reporting, particularly in the state sponsored Data Display (Cognos) system.

Race/Ethnicity Codes

USOE has permanently suspended the race/ethnicity data element in all pre-print/pre-load and all-student files. For all pre-print/pre-load f and all-student files being received by the USOE, the USOE software will write a “U” into this field in all records. If a student’s race/ethnicity is needed for any reason, the USOE will use the current the race/ethnicity recorded for the student in the USOE warehouse.

2010-11 AYP and Accountability Appeal Process

10:45 a.m.

Foreign Exchange Students Coding - John Brandt

  • Continue to report J-1 and F-1 Foreign Exchange students correctly in the October 1 and the end-of-year clearinghouse.
  • Do not forget to exit 12th grade foreign exchange students, or they will be considered dropouts.
  • Some LEAs continue to have problems with these data, and they will not receive the WPU reimbursement unless they report the students correctly.
  • For more information contact gregg [dot] roberts [at] schools [dot] utah [dot] gov (Gregg Roberts), (801) 538-7743.

11 a.m. 

Reporting of ELL Students – John Jesse or John Brandt

There are changes to the procedures and timing for reporting students exiting the ELL program. LEAs will no longer have to submit an override file after the end-of-year to clean-up the statuses of some ELL students. However, LEAs must change the statuses of exiting students in their SISs after they submit end-of-year data to the USOE via the Clearinghouse. 

11:15 a.m.

Changes and Clarifications of Completion Codes and Exit Codes - Emily Tew

Completion Codes

  • G1, G2 have been removed because of the indefinite suspension of UBSCT. UBSCT scores can be kept on transcripts so long as there are students who have taken the UBSCT
  • UN should only be used sparingly and only when the location or status of the student is unknown or uncertain.
  • GR High School Diploma – Will remain but will no longer be related to UBSCT.
  • G3 High School Diploma – IEP team has determined that the student’s participation in statewide assessment is through the UAA
  • GM Basic High School Diploma – did not meet requirements of GR
  • If you report a senior as “GP” Graduation Pending, you must submit a resolution in the October Clearinghouse upload. For example, you might tell USOE the student has a Certificate of Completion “CT”. If not, the code will be converted to a dropout in the USOE Warehouse.
  • If separate State and Federal graduation rates are calculated. “CT” will count as a dropout in Federal, but may not be counted as a dropout in some in State calculations.
  • Two new high school completion codes will be added; GG for graduate by GED and GC for graduate by Carnegie unit. These will be reported in the ES (exit status change) records in the October Clearinghouse submission by the LEA from which the student exited for some reason.
  • Please refrain from underusing or overusing some codes (e.g. RT and UN).

Exit Codes

  • The board rules say you must be a dropout to enter an adult education program. You cannot be concurrently enrolled in a regular high school and an adult education program.
  • Some exit codes are converted to drop-out, DO, in the USOE warehouse level. There exit codes and completion statuses, including dropouts, are processed and rates are calculated for federal and state reporting.
  • The AE and GE codes will be retained for documentation purposes but the USOE Warehouse will continue to treat them as dropouts. If GG or GC is submitted in an ES record for a student who has received a GED or Utah Adult High School Diploma; those codes will replace the dropout status the warehouse substituted for an earlier AE or GE.
  • The “S” suspended EXIT code in S1 record will be eliminated. Suspensions can be handled in the I2 record, especially for Special Education students. If a suspended student does not return to school, their exit code should be DO, dropout.
  • Some have questioned the elimination of the “S”, suspended exit code. Some LEAs do not keep a suspended student enrolled because they are not doing any servicing of that student while they are suspended. The student could be suspended but they are not expelled. Sometimes they go to another school or program. Some suggested a new code to indicate such a “transfer”. The LEA never expels a student but other LEAs do suspend for up to 10 days and then expel if suspension goes more than 10 days.
  • USOE will discuss and give recommendations for how LEAs are to deal with the removal of the suspension exit code. Maybe the USOE should change the expelled definition to “expelled or long term suspension”.

Graduation Codes and New Graduation Rate

The new/changed exit codes and high school completion status codes will be used to calculate the new national graduation rate. Knowledge of how the codes are used affects the accuracy of graduation rates and/or audit findings. 

  • Utah’s official graduation rate will align with the Federal four-year cohort graduation rate, except that it will report a three-year cohort graduation rate for three year high schools to compensate for the inequality that would otherwise exist between three and four year high schools.
  • Utah will not produce extended-year rates.
  • Students who are not graduates will be divided into three groups—Other Completers, Continuing Students, Dropouts.
  • The proposed graduation rate goal for AYP will be the average of 2008, 2009, and 2010 (71.8%) and the proposed targets will be a two percentage point increase from the previous year. Given this, we will share how each exit code and HS completion status codes are to be resolved.

Adult Education Exit Code Items – Alan Newton

Through the USOE IT section, Adult Education provides a file/report that contains those students who earned either an Adult Education Secondary Diploma or a GED outside of the K-12 system. These data are for out-of-school youth who are still of school age and have successfully completed the GED or an adult education diploma. These data are made available to all LEA IT staffs that are Clearinghouse liaisons/contacts. Those individuals should be passing this file on to the person responsible for changing student exit codes in the data included in the Clearinghouse. Files containing GED and adult education secondary diploma information were and will be posted to the Clearinghouse MoveIT folder – Adult Education - as follows for the 2010-10 school year and Subsequent School Years:

July 18th - A file containing all diplomas and GEDs completed July 1, 2010 through July 15, 2011. 

September 15th - A repost of the July 16th file plus a September 15th file containing diplomas and GEDs received after July 16th

October 3rd - A repost of the July 16th and September 15th files plus a new file containing all additional adult education diplomas and GEDs completed through September 15th and September 30th.

Beginning July 2011, this report/file will be more intuitive and should contain SSIDs, last school attended, and last district attended for as many K-12 students as the USOE can match. Therefore, it will be more of an LEA file/report rather than a statewide one. This modified file will be the one that is made available to the LEA from a new Clearinghouse MoveIT folder named “Adult ED”. This additional data may aid a LEA looking at the complete list of all such diplomas and GEDs statewide to determine which students may belong to their LEA.

USOE Adult Education is changing the labels on their Web site demographic screen to be “Legal first name,” “Legal last name,” “Legal middle name.” The Adult Education system does not make birth certificates mandatory because many of our students are refugees and do not have birth certificates. 


Lunch/Networking – You are on your own 

1:15 a.m.

UTREX – Pearson Data Solutions – Pilots and Rollout - Introductions (John Brandt), Project Timeline (Ken Jewkes)

  • All aspects of the core project (vertical data collection) are on schedule to be completed by contract and grant deadline of 7/31/2011. By this deadline, all pilot LEAs will be successfully reporting student data via UTREx, and the system will be ready for the rest of Utah LEAs to begin submitting.
  • All submissions for the 10/1 reporting deadline will have been made via UTREx.
  • Non-core components of the project, which are not bound by grant deadline (SSID automation and eTranscripts), are scheduled to be completed by 10/31/2011.

Overview of UTREx Solution - Pearson Staff

Vertical Reporting Framework (VRF) - Pearson Staff

Flat file submissions via MoveIT

Validation processes - Tier 1 (replaces FoxPro), Tier2

Operation Date Store (ODS) and Reports - Choice Solution Staff

Pilot Implementation Status - Pearson and Choice Staffs

Statewide production rollout and training - Clint Thomsen

Student Locator Framework (SLF) or SSID Automation Overview and Demo (Wyoming) - Pearson

Utah Transcript Center (UTC) - Pearson Staff

Utah universal SIF agent, writing of DLL and SQL to interface it to other SISs

3:45 a.m.

UTREx Questions and Answers and/or small group discussions - Pearson, Choice, COMSYS, USOE Staffs 


Friday, May 6, 2011 

8 a.m.

Continental Breakfast – Networking

8:30 a.m.

2011 Legislation Review - John Brandt, Judy Park

SB59 - Grading Schools This bill could have an impact on career and college readiness data.

SB305 - Career Alignment Even if the governor’s veto is not overturned, executive order is still pressing changes to UtahFutures including more SIS integration and transcript integration.

HB288 - Concurrent Enrollment Reporting

SB65 - Online courses 

9 a.m.

Reporting of Online Courses and/or Programs and SB65 for 2011-12 - Emily Eyre, Emily Tew

9:20 a.m.

School vs. Program Definition - Emily Tew

The USOE is making a concerted effort to make a clear distinction between programs and schools. Students may only be reported by/under/associated-with a school. Full Implementation of the definition may still be a year or two out and should eventually be defined in a board rule. Issues to be resolved:

  • At least one LEA would like to know how to report students in a preparation for life program for retained students. The USOE may need to define some sort of special purpose school for this type of “program” (e.g. 990/homeschool , 995/private school) OR report them in their school of residence.
  • There are possible problems with accreditation. Must a school, by definition, be accredited? For example, what does one do with a young parent’s school).
  • Who has access to what data at the LEA level is also a question.
  • Not reporting students under only schools can cause problems for cohorts and other reporting categories.

9:40 a.m.

Dual Immersion and New Course Code – FYI

The requirements for teachers working in a Dual Immersion program have been changed. These changes go into effect during the 2011-2012 school year. This information is to clarify USOE’s expectations regarding data reporting for schools and students participating in a USOE-approved Dual Immersion program as these new requirements are phased in. These guidelines are only appropriate for USOE-approved Dual Immersion programs and are not applicable to other situations.

CACTUS Data Reporting

1. 2010-2011 School Year

a. The primary English teacher should be entered in CACTUS with the grade-appropriate assignment (i.e. Grade 2).

b. The primary foreign language teacher may be entered in one of two ways:

  • If the teacher has an Elementary (1-8 or K-6) license area of concentration, or is earning one through ARL, he may be entered in CACTUS with the grade-appropriate assignment.
  • If the teacher does not have an Elementary license area of concentration and is working through ARL to meet the new requirements for Dual Immersion foreign language teachers, he may be entered in CACTUS as a School Specialist for the 2010-2011 school year only.

2. 2011-2012 School Year

a. The primary English teacher should be entered in CACTUS with the grade-appropriate, dual-immersion assignment (i.e. Grade 2 – Dual Immersion – French).

b. The primary foreign language teacher should be entered in CACTUS with the grade-appropriate, dual-immersion language teacher assignment (i.e. Grade 2 – Dual Immersion – French – Language Teacher).

Clearinghouse (Student) Data Reporting

1. 2010-2011 School Year

  • Students should be reported under the grade-appropriate core code (i.e. Grade 2). Both of the “paired” classes should be reported as separate classes, but both classes should be reported with the primary English language teacher as the teacher of record (column TEACHER 1 under Course Master). The primary foreign language teacher should be entered as the second teacher for each of these classes (column TEACHER 2 ID under Course Master).

2. 2011-2012 School Year

  • Students should be reported under the grade-appropriate, dual-immersion core code (i.e. Grade 2 – Dual Immersion - French). The “paired” classes of students should be reported as separate classes, but both classes should be reported with the primary English language teacher as the teacher of record (column TEACHER 1 under Course Master). The primary foreign language teacher should be entered as the second teacher for each of these classes (column TEACHER 2 ID under Course Master).

If you have questions regarding these guidelines or the new requirements for Dual Immersion teachers, please contact gregg [dot] roberts [at] schools [dot] utah [dot] gov (Gregg Roberts), (801) 538-7743 or travis [dot] rawlings [at] schools [dot] utah [dot] gov (Travis Rawlings), (801) 538-7601.

10 a.m.

Maximum Number of Days Enrolled and UTREx - Jennifer Lambert, John Brandt

With UTREx we will be able to check days of membership across LEAs. Thus, we have to resolve potential issues around student enrollment counts for students that will have over 180 days at the end of the year. Transfers, sometimes multiple ones and sometimes year-round schools can send the total days of enrollment over the allowed amount. The current UTREx rule is: Total days enrolled <= 180 days + (10 days * (# of schools attended – 1)).

In rare cases the USOE recognized this rule could force some schools to under report of days of enrollment for some students.

For example:

  • School A may have a student enrolled in a year-round schedule from July into September without the student going off track for 40 days.
  • Then the student transfers to school B on a regular schedule for 160 days from September to May
  • Finally the student transfers to year-round school C for the month of June and accumulate another 20 days.
  • Assuming each school is on a 180 day schedule, then this student was actually in school for 220 (50 + 160 + 20) days.
  • However, the current rule will only allow for 200 days (180 + (10 * 2)). The current UTREx process requires that these hours be reconciled by the schools, some of which may be in different LEAs.
  • There are two problems here, reconciliation may not be practical at the end of the year; and, given the example, may not be appropriate.

Note: Each school must report the total days of enrollment for each student only after the school has calculated those days as 180-equivalent-days according to the direction in the Clearinghouse specification.

Note: When reporting days of enrollment for part-time students the school must first prorate those days according to the directions in State School Board Rule R277-419-4 says:

C. Calculations

1. If a student was enrolled for only part of the school day or only part of the school year, the student's membership shall be prorated according to the number of hours, periods or credits for which the student actually was enrolled in relation to the number of hours, periods or credits for which a full-time student normally would have been enrolled. For example:

  • If the student was enrolled for 4 periods each day in a 7 period school day for all 180 school days, the student's aggregate membership would be 4/7 of 180 days or 103 days.
  • If the student was enrolled for 7 periods each day in a 7 period school day for 103 school days, the student's membership would also be 103 days. This works for secondary, but not for elementary (generally elementary has no periods).

2. For students in grades 2 through 12, days in membership shall be calculated by the LEA using a method equivalent to the following: total clock hours of instruction for which the student was enrolled during the school year divided by 990 hours and then multiplied by 180 days and finally rounded up to the nearest whole day. For example, if a student was enrolled for only 900 hours during the school year, the student's aggregate membership would be (900/990)*180, and the LEA would report 164 days. Note: This is a more generally (across all grade levels) applicable rule, Davis does it by % of hours.

3. For students in grade 1, the first term of the formula shall be adjusted to use 810 hours as the denominator.

4. For students in kindergarten, the first term of the formula shall be adjusted to use 450 hours as the denominator.

10:30 a.m.

Multiple School-of-Record Enrollments and UTREx - Jennifer Lambert

Currently, the USOE Clearinghouse forces LEAs to designate a school-of-record (AKA primary school) for students enrolled in more than one school in the same LEA at the same time on October 1. With UTREx this is being expanded so that LEAs must designate a school-of-record for students enrolled in more than one school (regardless of LEA) at the same time (for any day). UTREx will allow for a 10-day overlap in its records to allow for the 10 day rule in transfers. UTREx will notify all LEAs involved if a student is being claimed by more than one school-of-record in excess of the 10-day overlap and LEAs must resolve the discrepancy. If the discrepancy is not resolved, UTREx rules will default to the latest enrollment. In the case of the 10-day overlap when the “tie” needs to be broken for business rules/reporting, UTREx rules will resolve the “tie” by defaulting to the latest enrollment.

11 a.m.

YIC reporting (S3 records) for end of year - Verne Larsen, Travis Cook 

General Information

S3 records are now part of the clearinghouse for the collection of YIC enrollment data. These records are for reporting the enrollments of students who received YIC services for 10 or more consecutive days of in one of following:

  • For any student enrolled for 10 days or more (1/8 credit or more) in a residential or self-contained school and attending classes, there must be an AM record like a regular school. For example, if there are 100 classes in the residential school there must be 100 AC records with AM records for all students that were in those classes for more than 10 days.
  • Currently, some regular and alternative schools are incorrectly reporting these classes as study hall, teacher aide etc., but putting “math” etc. in the transcript.
  • The YIC residential institution codes will not be listed as schools anymore in the directories or the USOE school tables. In most cases “master” or “umbrella” alternative high schools will be reporting in place of these YIC residential “schools”.
  • If a student is FAY (full academic year) due to some mix of enrollments under the master school (generally an alternative school) then they are included in the accountability reports like AYP for that alternative school.
  • Most residential schools will not have enough students with FAY to be included in AYP.

Use of YIC codes/courses for graduation requirements will have to be addressed by the LEAs and the accreditation process.

The USOE clearinghouse will edit combined membership across three sources (S1, S2, and S3 records). The edit will require.

  • 1. S1 membership + S2 (self-contained membership only) is less than or equal to 180 days, plus 10 days for each time a student transitions between schools.
  • 2. S1 membership + S3 membership (considered self-contained) is less than or equal to 180 days, plus 10 days for each time a student transitions between schools.

Note: These S2 and S3 memberships will never be added together for membership calculations.

Some Additional Questions/Discussions About the S3 Record

  • Will each S3 record require an S1? Yes.
  • Some LEAs have asked if there was some way they could be given a file from YICopia of students attending their YIC residential facility but from another district. UTREx should eliminate the need for this request.
  • Some questioned whether foster children along with proctored and monitored students should be included/indicated. If the foster child is “in custody”, then they should be included/indicated.
  • Beginning in the 2010-11 school year Utopia was separated and are two distinct independent sites which are UTopia for Adult-ED and YICopia for Youth in Custody.
  • Utopia keeps track of Adult-Ed students, Classes attendance, tests credits, graduations, GED’s etc.
  • YICopia only keeps student demographic information and Student location (District, School, Facility) information.
  • YICopia does not keep track of credits, attendance, classes, tests, etc.
  • YICopia operates as a virtual file where documents such as transcripts, are scanned and stored and follow the student from YIC facility to facility.
  • Credits, classes, attendance and tests should reside in each LEA’s SIS. 


Lunch/Networking – You are on your own

1 p.m.

Data Use and Privacy Concerns - Jennifer Lambert

We have had feedback that some parents may not be accurately identifying their students for fear of how the data is being used. All who work with data in your districts and schools must be familiar with proper data use and implement it. We also encourage you to inform parents of your data use policy.

Recently, the United States Department of Education, USED, has developed guidance to help all educational entities and staff that use and store data.

FERPA/Privacy Law: The Education Department is releasing a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). The proposed regulations will give states the flexibility to share data to ensure that taxpayer funds are invested wisely in effective programs, as well as increase accountability for institutions that handle FERPA protected records.

Under the Department's proposal

  • Enforcement provisions of FERPA would be strengthened to ensure that every entity working with personally identifiable information from student education records is using it for authorized purposes only.
  • Schools will be able to implement directory information policies that limit access to student records, preventing marketers or criminals from accessing the data.
  • States can enter into research agreements on behalf of their districts to measure the success of programs, such as early childhood programs that effectively prepare kids for kindergarten.
  • High school administrators can share information on student achievement to track how their graduates perform academically in college.

In addition, US ED has created a Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) that provides guidance on privacy issues. They have developed Technical Briefs that are very helpful. 

Data Ethics The National Forum on Education Statistics produces a number of free publications that provide rich information on a variety of data-related topics, such as Longitudinal Data Systems, Race/Ethnicity, Displaced Students and Finance Data.

The Forum is creating online courses based on some of its best practice publications. These courses, which include multimedia videos, PowerPoint presentations, notes, quizzes, and other supporting materials, offer the education community an opportunity to learn about important education data issues. These resources can be used to train staff at many levels. Thus far, the Forum has developed a course on Data Ethics.

1:15 p.m.

ACT Scores on Transcripts - Derek Howard

As documented by the ACT: ACT scores that are included on a high school transcript are not official scores – regardless of whether obtained electronically, displayed via a score label or hand-entered. Official ACT scores are only those that go directly from the ACT to the recipient (e.g. college). Score labels on transcripts are NOT official -- because the scores are going through the intermediate hands of the school and may not reflect the scores on ACT's database by the time the college receives the transcript. The USOE strongly encourages districts to work with their SIS provider/vendor to add a disclaimer to their high school transcripts. The USOE and ACT recommend:

ACT scores are not official scores. The student must request official scores directly from ACT.

Students may not select test scores from different test dates to construct a new record. They must designate an entire test date record as it stands. If students wish to report Writing Test results, they must report the entire record for the test date when they took the Writing Test.

The USOE will be receiving statewide ACT scores directly from the ACT for official use in the calculation of school grading and other accountability reports.

1:30 p.m.

Attendance Data - Heather Chapman and Lisa Wisham

LEAs, schools and teachers often do not take attendance in a consistent manner. As more and more focus is placed on attendance (e.g. the Chronic Absence Committee), the USOE and LEAs must start to develop more universal rules and guideline about collecting and reporting attendance data.

There may be a need for expanded board rules to mandate uniformity of definitions, and practice, specifically reporting.

Utah has a Federal Technical assistance grant (one of 3 three state) to study attendance; in particular how after school programs affect it.

2 p.m.

Like Schools/PVA - Kristin Campbell

Using Polytopic Vector Analysis, PVA (a statistical program designed to analyze samples that are mixtures), school types are identified. Each school is described by data with percentages of all these types and likeness to other schools. This adds value for comparing efficacy of programs, school evaluations and school achievement. By identifying like schools, initiatives and resources can be tailored to fit the school.

Thank you to everyone form making time in your busy schedules to participate in this meeting.

Late Updated: 05/03/2011