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The information school administrators collect is valuable however, they usually end up storing it – literally. Accountability and assessment initiatives are forcing schools to pull data out of the drawers and out into the open. Some are taking this a step further with school data rooms, where teachers are able to view student information in a structured and easily accessible manner.

At Gilliard Elementary School in Mobile, Alabama, color-coded sticky notes line the walls of a space dubbed “the data room.” These notes show teachers where their students stand on the math and reading standards as well as their discipline and attendance records.

The goal is to assist teachers in identifying and meeting students’ needs before they become too much. If a student is not meeting his or their reading goals teachers can provide extra practice or work with them outside of school. If a student is having an issue with their behavior the teacher may send them to counseling or even consider taking that student out of the classroom altogether.

In addition, by putting data in the forefront teachers can also celebrate successes with their students. This is a major part of Baker’s strategy. In the spring of 2013, a homeless student proudly stood up to explain that he had achieved his goal in reading.

Be sure to adhere to FERPA guidelines and safeguard your students’ privacy before you make the switch to a digital room. This is especially important for data displays in the classroom that includes sensitive information, such as counseling sessions or disciplinary actions can be accidentally shared.