Flowers, N., & Carpenter, D. M. H. (2009). You don’t have to be a statistician to use data: A process for data-based decision making in schools. Phi Delta Kappan, 91(2), 64-67.
The purpose of this article is to discuss data-based decision making in schools. The authors report that many schools do not use data to inform decisions because they perceive it to be a cumbersome and time consuming process. To address this concern, Flowers and Carpenter offer five key steps to help schools get started using data: 1) Review the school improvement plan; 2) determine how data will be used; 3) identify and gather relevant data; 4) examine and discuss the data closely; and 5) set short-term and long-term goals and regularly evaluate progress. The authors maintain that using data to make decisions can have a profound effect on schools, yet educators must overcome the belief that the process is too overwhelming and complicated.
Expectations for Data Use