NAICU Washington Update

Ed Dept. Continues to Expand its Data Collection Horizons

September 23, 2011

The Department of Education has formally added "P-20W" to its lexicon of longitudinal data collection - signaling the inevitable growth path that already has taken us from K-12 to P-16 to P-20. As explained in a Sept. 20 Federal Register notice, the next round of Statewide, Longitudinal Data Systems Program awards will focus on the creation of comprehensive P-20W ("early learning through workforce") data systems.

The notice indicates no funds will be made available for the maintenance of existing data systems. Rather, support will be provided only for new K-12 systems, or for the linkage of K-12 systems with early childhood, postsecondary, and/or workforce data. Department officials envision using the $100 million proposed for the data systems program in the president's FY 2012 budget for the expansion, but note Congress has not yet approved the request.

If funding comes through, it will bring total federal spending on the development of longitudinal data systems to approximately $635 million. (See Washington Update, 6/3/10).

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