Turning to data to improve Schools

Keiki photo


Hawaii’s public-school system is taking significant steps to package test scores and a wide range of data to create an important resource for its parents, teachers and school administrators.


The new digital tool represents a major shift from the days when parents and other stakeholders in Hawaii’s public schools, who wanted to check on school performance, could only look in the paper for the standardized test scores that were released each fall.


Now, the state DOE has launched an online tool that allows easy tracking of the progress Hawaii’s public-school students are making on a variety of measures found in the state’s 2017-2020 strategic plan for education.


Known as the Strategic Plan Dynamic Report, the new tool organizes data into indicators of how DOE students are doing. Among these indicators are chronic absenteeism, third-grade literacy, various academic achievement measures, ninth-grade passage rates, college-going graduates, and Career & Technical Education. The department’s strategic plan sets targets for each of the measures.


9th Grade on Track | Hawaii DOE

Percentage of ninth grade students advancing to tenth grade as seen on the Strategic Plan Dynamic Report data visualization tool. (Click the image for additional detail.)


The online report enables users to determine the performance of students in various school complexes by selecting a complex from a pull-down menu. Likewise, within any complex, a student subgroup menu shows the indicators for students in various groups, including males, females, disabled students and students of different ethnicities.


For example, the online reporting tool reveals science performance gained statewide, moving to 46 percent from 43 percent proficient, while the percentage of ninth-graders who moved up to 10th grade on time remained flat at 91 percent.


Now, those with a stake in our public schools can easily see the progress, or lack of progress, among various schools and groups and how much remains to be done to reach the goals established for each in the strategic plan.


The Strategic Plan Dynamic Report website uses the 2015-2016 school year as a baseline. It measures changes from that year against the target set for each category for 2020.

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