The Power of Data: Enhancing Communications with Your School Board
In an era where big data is integral in almost every sector, education is not left behind. The effective use of data can significantly improve communication and decision-making within a school district, especially when it involves interactions with School Board Members.
Data-Based Decision Support Systems (DDS) have emerged as a powerful tool for harnessing the power of data, facilitating stronger decision-making processes, and promoting transparency in communication at School Board meetings.
Data-Based Decision Support Systems (DDS) are a combination of technologies, applications, and practices aimed at collecting, processing, and interpreting data to assist in decision-making processes. DDS harness data’s potential to facilitate informed, evidence-based decision-making, providing a systematic approach that significantly reduces subjectivity and bias.
Leveraging DDS for Enhanced Communication
Data-driven insights: The first step towards enhancing communication is developing an understanding based on facts rather than assumptions. With DDS, school district leaders can present data-driven insights about various aspects, such as student performance, staff performance, budget utilization, and school infrastructure, to School Board members. These insights help to paint a comprehensive and accurate picture, setting a solid foundation for constructive dialogue.
Transparency and accountability: DDS ensure data is readily available and accessible to those who need it, promoting transparency. When school district leaders share this data with School Board members, it fosters a sense of openness, responsibility, and accountability. It reduces confusion and possible misunderstandings, leading to more productive discussions and decisions.
Trend prediction and future planning: DDS not only provide information on the current state but also predict future trends using algorithms and data patterns. This capability can significantly assist in communicating future plans and proposals at School Board meetings backed by hard evidence.
Ease of understanding: DDS have the capability to represent data in visual forms like graphs, charts, and tables, making it easier for School Board members to understand complex data. This visual data representation enables board members to grasp key insights quickly, streamlining discussions and facilitating more informed decision-making.
How Three Districts Have Utilized DDS
Data and Data-Based Decision Support Systems can be powerful tools for improving communication and decision-making in school districts. By promoting transparency, providing data-driven insights, and facilitating easy understanding, DDS can support more effective discussions and strategic decisions at School Board meetings. It is essential, however, to ensure the system is correctly implemented and regularly reviewed and that all stakeholders have the necessary understanding to fully harness its capabilities. With these practices in place, DDS can significantly enhance the operation of school districts to the benefit of students, staff, and the school board.
Dr. Taylor Plumblee is an experienced education executive with demonstrated success in education management and marketing. She joined Frontline Education in 2021 and is the Manager of Product and Solution Marketing with a focus on Student & Business Solutions including School Health Management, Special Program Management, Student Information Systems, and Data & Analytics. She has taught at both the elementary and high school levels in both traditional public and public charter schools. Her areas of expertise include student services, career technical education, special education, school health management, and student information systems. Her areas of responsibility included staff professional development, guidance and student services, and master schedule at the largest high school in Central Florida, with a student enrollment of 4,300+. She directly supervised 25 faculty, 10 school counselors, and 5 support staff. Taylor graduated in 2020 from Northeastern University with her Doctorate in Education with a concentration in Curriculum, Teaching, Leadership, and Learning. Her dissertation researched the conditions under which education technology is successfully implemented in the school setting. She has found success in bringing her experience in school based-administration to the SaaS and EdTech industry.