Before the pandemic, significant performance gaps illustrated the profound inequities within New York’s education system. Meaningful disparities in Regents examination data exist between students with disabilities, multilingual learner students, economically disadvantaged students, and Black and Hispanic students and their peers, with differences as high as 46 percentage points in 2019.1 The pandemic has only exacerbated the challenges for New York’s most vulnerable students.2 Since 2016, districts in the Wayne Finger Lakes BOCES region have been implementing personalized learning as a strategy to address inequities in the system and close achievement gaps. District leaders indicate that implementation has been uneven due to disruptions related to the pandemic, and they lack information about the extent to which implementation has taken hold and whether these practices have made a difference for students, particularly for historically marginalized students. This partnership strengthened partners’ capacity to collect data on personalized learning programs in order to monitor progress and drive continuous improvement.
During this partnership, REL Northeast & Islands collaborated with partners on a technical support project to inventory districts’ data systems for collecting personalized learning data, assess the availability of student indicators, identify gaps, and develop an action plan for additional data collection to address these gaps. The resulting data catalogs were designed to inform the development of progress monitoring tools for district leaders to track personalized learning access, participation, and outcomes. REL Northeast & Islands published a blog about this work. The partnership ended with the conclusion of the data catalog project in summer 2023. REL Northeast & Islands thanks its partners for their contributions.
Partnership Organizations: Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES, Gananda Central School District, Sodus Central School District, Waterloo Central School District, Williamson Central School District, and Marion Central School District
1 NYSED, (2019). New York state report card 2018-2019. Retrieved June 22, 2022, from https://data.nysed.gov/
2 NYSED, (2021). New York State Education Department American Rescue Plan. Retrieved June 22, 2022, from https://oese.ed.gov/files/2021/06/New-York-ARP-ESSER-Application.pdf
This project included a series of meetings to lead the Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES and partner districts through a process to identify learner outcomes of interest and related indicators and measures of personalized learning. REL Northeast & Islands researchers, along with district staff, inventoried data systems, assessed the availability of student indicators, identified gaps, and discussed action steps to address these gaps. The data catalog documents administrative data, assessment data, and digital platform data. The final catalog is a flexible-use Excel workbook that provides a shell for organizing and tracking student data relevant for measuring learner outcomes related to personalized learning which could be used across other districts and states.