Race to the Top winners reinforce importance of measuring schooling effectiveness


The long awaited winners of the second round of Race To The Top were announced yesterday. Race To The Top is about education reform to improve schools and is based on four assurances:

1) Raising standards and improving assessments.
2) Recruiting, retaining and supporting effective educators and ensure equitable distribution of teaching resources.
3) Building robust data systems to track student progress and improve outcomes.
4) Turning around low-performing schools.

The four assurances are necessary to help close the achievement gap, reduce dropout rates and improve graduation rates across the US. I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to mention that SAS EVAAS for K-12 is currently used state-wide in three of the 12 states that won Race To The Top money and at district levels in six.

Across the US, educators are learning how to use data effectively to support student achievement and to measure schooling effectiveness. However, all analyses aren’t the same! SAS EVAAS for K12 offers the most robust and accurate measurements available as validated by the US Department of Education and the US General Accounting Office. Measuring student growth and providing accurate projections to future academic milestones is important as states work to increase the number of STEM graduates and adequately prepare students for college and career readiness. With SAS EVAAS, educators can determine whether all students have plentiful choices and increased opportunities for learning.

So congratulations to those states that are leading the way in education reform and realizing the power and potential of student data.


About Author

Lindia Harbaugh

State & Local Government Director of Operations

As Director of Business Development & Operations for State & Local Government at SAS, Lindia Harbaugh helms SAS’ development efforts in the vertical industries within state and local governments and manages the operations of the State and Local Government business unit at SAS. Lindia has over 20 years experience structuring, negotiating and administering contracts in federal, state and local government. Prior to joining SAS, she worked for global companies in the telecommunications industry, including Alcatel and Sumitomo. Lindia is an active board member for the Granville Education Foundation, which raises money to bring 21st century technology into the classroom in Granville County schools. She holds a degree in business administration from Wesleyan College and an associate's degree in computer programming from Bristol Community College.

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