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Getting Started

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Data plays an integral role in informing districts, schools, and communities of successful trends and in identifying critical areas for improvement. It can also play an important role in advocating for change. However, given the complexity and quantity of available education data, key stakeholders often feel overwhelmed when trying to determine how to leverage it to make improvements for students. However, the complexities of working with data for advocacy can be overcome by:

  1. Connecting the WHY or purpose of advocacy and data collection to a framework;

  2. Understanding HOW to leverage and analyze data effectively to support advocacy efforts; and

  3. Knowing WHAT data is needed to advocate successfully.

While working with data may seem daunting, leveraging data remains fundamental for informing action. When supported by data, advocacy efforts can help align and advise new policies and revise current ones that affect whether students experience an equitable, effective, and engaging education.

Teacher talking with another adult inside of classroom while children work at a table behind her with teacher

Advocacy describes the efforts and activities that individuals or groups undertake in order to influence specific policies or practices.

This guide intends to support educators, students, families, and community members as they navigate the challenges of leveraging data for advocacy. Given this, TLA encourages leadership teams to navigate this resource sequentially. In each section, you will find activities, strategies, and concrete examples to support deeper understanding and action.

  • Key Stakeholders - WHO Uses Data for Advocacy: Strategies for identifying the advocacy roles that key stakeholders may hold.

  • Leveraging Data for Systemic Change - WHY Stakeholders Advocate: A framework to help stakeholders anchor their data advocacy efforts with key areas for improvement.

  • Putting Data into Action - HOW to Work with Data to Support Advocacy: Specific strategies for analyzing and collecting data with the goal of being able to communicate and advocate for greater equity.

The Learning Accelerator (TLA) has created an editable Data Advocacy Reflection and Planning Workbook to help support reflection and planning as you work through this guide.

EXPLORE GUIDES

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CONTINUE TO NEXT STEP Who Uses Data for Advocacy