- Strategy, Evaluation and Learning
PSESD’s Strategy, Evaluation and Learning Department (StEL) recently concluded the Data Capacity for Equity Partnership, a groundbreaking initiative funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that sought to examine how data is used to address deep inequities in education and to support the adoption of a racial equity lens.
Beginning in the Fall of 2019, The Data Capacity for Equity Partnership made grants to and engaged six community-based organizations (CBOs) in a learning community to build data capacity. These community-based organizations included: African Community Housing and Development, Child Care Resources, Kent Education and Equity Partnership, Renton Innovation Zone-Partnership and Supporting Partnerships in Education and Beyond (formerly known as Somali Parent Education Board). These six partners examined how data is used, developed problems of practices, and used the PSESD Racial Equity Tool to create questions that enabled them to gather relevant data. Their projects included the evaluation studies, creation of new data and shared measurement systems, all of which supported these CBOs to develop internal capacity and partnerships and support students and families within the community.
The Data Capacity for Equity Partnership has offered learning and engagement around equity and data to extend beyond these CBO partners, and has engaged practitioners and educators working with CBOs, or in the P-20 public education system. In summer 2020, the Data Capacity for Equity Training Series offered participants an opportunity to learn on foundational data practices such as the development of logic models, conducting focus groups and effective data communication. This Spring 2021, the Data Capacity for Equity Partnership hosted Humanizing the Data Conversation: An Equity Spring Series which included presenters from the Community Café Collaborative, Oregon State University, South King County Discipline Coalition, Seattle Public Schools, The Road Map Project, King County Reconnect to Opportunity, Equity Matters, Graduate Tacoma, Youth Development Executives of King County The Center for Appreciative Inquiry
This series brought together experts across various fields to share their insights and knowledge on how to effectively employ antiracist practices in the collection and use of data and guidance on how to nurture a learning culture around data. The session presenters shared various data tools and techniques such as the use of appreciative inquiry, methods of engaging youth in research, effective listening sessions, the Community Café approach, as well as engaged participants in discussions around racial demographics and data and its implications on equity.
As the Data Capacity for Equity Partnership grant concludes, the StEL team is looking forward to continued growth and learning for partners and participants of this learning community.