Harnessing the Power of Evidence-Based Policymaking
Evidence-based policymaking can transform the delivery of education services, restore public trust in schools, and improve outcomes for students. It can cut through the noise of political and cultural divisions and give decision makers clarity on how to prioritize the use of limited resources. And it can help build a shared understanding of where the systems designed to serve kids are working well—and where they aren’t—so that leaders can ground their decisions in facts rather than anecdotes and in real student needs rather than perceptions of them.
Given the many challenges to U.S. public education, students, educators and communities need nothing less than excellent support. By harnessing the power of evidence-based policymaking, state boards of education can make faster progress toward that excellence. When government leaders build data and evidence use into the fabric of their organizations, they are better positioned to accomplish the following:
- understand students’ needs;
- strategically and equitably invest in evidence-based strategies aligned with those needs;
- learn more about the impact of their investments, policies, and programs on students’ opportunities and outcomes; and
- continuously improve the state’s education
Also In this Issue
No one model is clearly superior, but relationships, talent, and shared loyalty are marks of governance systems that get things done.
Savvy boards can increase the odds their plans will live, breathe, and have measurable impact.
On average, takeover fails to improve achievement measures, but how it is done matters a lot.
State boards should lean into education data and work to overcome challenges to doing so.
As states seek to bring coherence to the disparate systems that have a hand in early education and care, state boards have key roles to play.
While relationships with school leaders were contentious in places, many districts benefited from collaborative ones.