WDQC Convenes Data Advocates

by Michelle Massie
July 30, 2014

Yesterday, WDQC connected more than 40 national policy experts, advocates and state officials for a conversation about Federal Data Policy: Successes and Opportunities in Washington, DC.

Coming off the heels of the passage of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and the Obama Administration’s release of an action plan for improving federally-funded job training programs, the meeting was a chance to bring together WDQC partners, advisors and funders to acknowledge these forward movements, but also to discuss the next steps such as identifying important federal data policy leverage points and planning approaches for advocacy.

WDQC assessed the alignment of its reform agenda with major policy events, such as bills recently introduced to amend the Perkins Career and Technical Education Act and the Higher Education Act, and discussed strategy for future collective action.

“To set the tone for today, more than anything, this is a celebration of everyone who cares about data quality and accountability,” said WDQC Director Rachel Zinn. “We also want to think a little bit more strategically about how to move this policy forward into implementation.”

Participants noted several areas where it could be helpful for WDQC to weigh in over the next few months, such as the development of a new Workforce Information Advisory Council under WIOA and use of federal tax data to measure employment outcomes.

All of WDQC’s national partners were in attendance, in addition to several advisor organizations, including, but not limited to: American Association of Community Colleges, American Institutes for Research, Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce, George Washington University Institute of Public Policy and National Governors Association. Additionally, several state data representatives joined the meeting via conference call, which included: Pennsylvania, Nebraska, Kentucky, Texas, Florida, Indiana, Oregon, Missouri, Ohio and Rhode Island.