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Data-Informed Leadership for Equity

Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Midwest partnered with Iowa City Community School District and will expand the partnership to other districts to continue to build school leader capacity in using data to reduce disparities in sense of belonging, disciplinary actions, and absenteeism among student groups in middle school. To achieve this goal, the Data-Informed Leadership for Equity (DILE) partnership will develop, test, and refine an approach that will incorporate professional learning in student-focused practices as well as training and tools specifically designed to support the use of data to act upon racial disparities in student experiences and outcomes.

Current Projects

The DILE approach will incorporate professional learning in culturally responsive practices as well as training and tools specifically designed to support the systemic use of data to act on racial and other group inequities in student experiences and outcomes in middle school. The DILE approach will include four components: Action-based monitoring (ABM) to facilitate the monitoring of students’ sense of belonging and engagement (i.e., attendance, discipline) over across time; a protocol to guide school leaders and staff in identifying and addressing the school policies, practices, and initiatives that might be leading to differences in student sense of belonging and engagement; training for school leaders and staff in culturally responsive practices, ABM and the protocol; and coaching to support implementation.

REL Midwest will partner with Iowa City Community School District (ICCSD) and other Iowa districts to develop, pilot, and refine the DILE approach, which aims to support educators with knowledge and skills to use real-time data and make decisions that lead to the reduction of disparities between student groups in sense of belonging, disciplinary actions, and attendance. The research team will conduct interviews and stakeholder feedback surveys to address research questions related to the usability, feasibility, and acceptability of the components for the approach. The study will provide information that improves the implementation of the DILE approach.

No completed projects at this time.

Event Type: Webinar | Event Date: April 11, 2024
Time: 1:00 p.m.-1:30 p.m. Central Time Location: Virtual Description: This REL Midwest webinar shared about the importance of sense of belonging for middle school students and strategies for teachers and school leaders to improve it. The webinar included...
Product Type: Blog | Publication Date: March 12, 2024
Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Midwest is looking for school districts in the Midwest to join the Data-Informed Leadership for Equity (DILE) partnership, which strives to build school leader capacity to use data to reduce disparities in sense of...
Product Type: Video | Publication Date: February 2024
This video provides an overview of the REL Midwest Data-Informed Leadership for Equity (DILE) partnership and how it supports district leadership in using data to foster student sense of belonging. The video features comments from DILE partnership leads...
Product Type: Blog | Publication Date: December 13, 2023
School leaders and educators can use these practical strategies to communicate with caregivers about school climate surveys and their beneficial role in helping schools assess how well they are providing supportive learning environments.
Product Type: Blog | Publication Date: May 25, 2023
This blog post describes the Data-Informed Leadership for Equity partnership’s action-based monitoring tool and training, designed to build school leader capacity to act on data to reduce disparities in student experiences.
Event Type: Training Material | Event Date: February 23, 2023
Time: 8:00 a.m. Central Location: Iowa City, IA Description: This training will introduce the DILE partnership's action-based monitoring (ABM) tool to school leaders. School leaders will develop a shared understanding of the DILE approach and purpose...
Product Type: Blog | Publication Date: February 08, 2023
With the start of 2023, we begin the second year of REL Midwest’s current five-year cycle of work.
Product Type: Resource | Publication Date: January 2023
The Data-Informed Leadership for Equity (DILE) partnership is working with school districts in Iowa to build school leader capacity in using data to reduce disparities in sense of belonging, disciplinary actions, and attendance among middle school students...
Product Type: Infographic | Publication Date: December 2022
This infographic highlights factors related to student sense of belonging and provides culturally responsive educator practices that may support student belonging and engagement.
Product Type: Blog | Publication Date: November 21, 2022
Through the Data-Informed Leadership for Equity (DILE) partnership, REL Midwest is working with school districts in Iowa to help them use data and culturally responsive practices to reduce disparities in sense of belonging, disciplinary actions, and...
Product Type: Resource | Publication Date: June 2022
REL Midwest works with educators in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin to support the use of evidence and data to improve student outcomes. In particular, REL Midwest seeks to address priorities related to the needs and...
Product Type: Blog | Publication Date: May 05, 2022
Students’ sense of belonging is an important factor for overall success in school...
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Supporting Illinois teachers in addressing gaps in students’ mathematics achievement with a focus on fractions. The partnership will draw on a What Works Clearinghouse practice guide to develop an educator toolkit.
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Supporting Ohio high schools in identifying policies and practices misaligned with the needs of students of color and students receiving special education services as a way to improve school climates and reduce disparities in discipline referrals.
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Partnering with school districts in Indiana to strengthen high-quality career pathways and programs of study at the secondary level, with a focus on increasing student participation in immersive work-based learning (WBL).
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Supporting Michigan educators and school leaders in integrating evidence-based strategies and culturally responsive practices into K–1 literacy instruction, with a focus on phonological awareness and phonics.
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Supporting Iowa middle school leaders in using data and culturally responsive practices with the goal of reducing racial/ethnic disparities in students’ sense of belonging, discipline referrals, and absenteeism.
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Supporting Wisconsin grade 6 teachers in integrating computational thinking and student-focused practices into mathematics instruction, with the aim of improving students’ mathematics engagement and achievement.
Partnership | Approved Date: N/A
Supporting Minnesota school leaders in promoting favorable working conditions and in retaining teachers of color and Indigenous teachers.

REL Midwest Logic Model (185 KB)

REL Midwest Logic Model