WDQC Hosts State Strategy Session
WDQC recently hosted a meeting of representatives from about a dozen national organizations that all share the goal of helping states leverage education and employment data to improve human capital development.
The meeting’s objectives included reviewing organizations’ current activities, approaches, and geographic focus, and developing shared strategies to facilitate more coordination between these organizations and states.
Progress and follow-up actions were discussed in a number of key areas:
Using data to inform policies - States have been making progress in developing data systems, and now is the time to emphasize using this information to evaluate programs and inform policies.
Providing assistance where needed - Participants acknowledged the importance of helping states sustain their longitudinal data systems because assessing progress over long periods of time would help inform policies and more effectively bridge education and labor gaps. Participants at the meeting saw a useful role in offering technical assistance and enhancing states’ research capacity.
Improving data sharing - Data-sharing agreements are developed differently among states. States share data, but sometimes encounter challenges even within their borders. Thus, encouraging state agencies to develop quality agreements will be critical to more effective data sharing.
- Building momentum through strategic communication - Participants recognized the importance of elevating political will at local and state levels, and tailoring communication by making data issues more clear and relevant to education and workforce leaders. Participants also recognized the role they could play in further cultivating interagency communication.
Representatives from the organizations looked forward to building on the strategy session. Many planned to follow up with each other and strengthen networks in support of improving the use of data in the states.