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Securing Atlanta's Future Thought Leadership

How to use education data to make a difference

By Rebecca Parshall, PhD

Learn4Life (L4L) recently released the 6th annual State of Education in Metro Atlanta. The report highlights three focus areas: our region’s educational data, how to use data as a flashlight, and some of the strategies that are improving outcomes for traditionally underserved students. The data can help all stakeholders play a role in improving education in the region.

1. Business Leaders and Policymakers: Business leaders and policymakers play an important role in supporting public education. By looking at regional data along key indicators, these leaders can identify opportunities for investment and partnership. 

L4L measures progress in the five core counties along the cradle to career continuum. In the years leading up to the pandemic, most outcomes had been increasing by several points, but pandemic disruptions essentially reversed those gains. Additionally, learning loss over the past several years was not distributed evenly; Black, Latino, and low-income students experienced steeper declines than their white and higher-income peers.

2. Educators and Parents: Curious to learn about peer schools that are achieving uncommon success? Bright Spot identification can help ensure that Bright Spots are replicated in every corner of metro Atlanta.

Despite the inequities and challenges in the above data, there are many schools in metro Atlanta proving it is possible for all students to reach their highest potential. L4L’s data dashboard allows you to find schools that perform above expectations based on the student populations they serve. Explore the tool here. Each school has two dots based on the subgroup you select to learn about – either socioeconomic status, race, gender, or English proficiency. L4L’s networks use this tool to learn about the strategies our region’s best schools implement.

L4L’s networks study our region’s data to identify strategies that are working to improve outcomes for kids. In early literacy, we see the importance of adults understanding how to teach reading, and of fostering joyful, engaging learning experiences. We know that 8th graders who have access to STEM-integrated learning have higher math proficiency. And we’ve studied the value of college access partners in supporting first-generation students transition into college. As metro Atlanta rebuilds from the pandemic, we hope to reimagine educational outcomes that cannot be predicted by race and class and instead shape a region where every child has access to these Bright Spots.  

If you’re a parent, or from a school, nonprofit, community organization, or business, and you’d like to support Learn4Life’s cradle to career approach, you can join our early literacy, math, and postsecondary success networks here. All are welcome, and we’d love to have your voice at the table.

 

This is sponsored content.

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