Vermont Official State Website
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Knowledge Base

The goal of this website is to assemble data collection and reporting guidance from AOE, and answer common questions or concerns.

Please use this site as the first place you look to for answers. We will often reference this site as a resource when answering your questions.

If you see something missing, please reach out to the SLDS support group(AOE.SLDSSupportGroup@vermont.gov) and we'll address it as soon as possible.

How to use this site

Use the search bar above to search this site for information.

We hope that this site will help you discover helpful information about data reporting requirements and governance quickly.

We will try to move common questions to this site over time. If you have any suggestions, questions, or comments about the information contained here, please reach out the the SLDS support group via email(AOE.SLDSSupportGroup at vermont.gov).

New Data Managers

Welcome new data manager, thank you in advance for your hard work. You help us gather data as a state so we can strive to improve the outcomes for all Vermonters using a data driven, facts based approach.

Below are some tips that will hopefully help you get started.

Where to Start? Hints and tips:

  1. EdFusion is currently used to submit your data to the state. Start by familiarizing yourself with EdFusion and how it works with this FAQ page. We hope to pilot and move to an EdFi based solution in the future. Reach out if you are interested in this pilot.

  2. Review the Various collections you'll submit there and the general schedule.

  3. Determine the file specifications you'll use for the submission your working on. You'll likely need to start with doing a DC1/2 to get the state's unique identifier for students and staff.

  4. Work up the file numbering scheme when dealing with errors. For example, work on errors in 0_Student_Identity before working on errors in 4_PS_Enroll.

  5. It's recommended to set up regularly scheduled DC3 submissions of your data via sftp. Essentially you just submit your files every night and get an email about it in the morning without having to do anything. Most SIS providers have a way to do this that's just a few clicks away. You'll need to do a DC3 monthly to get Direct Cert information anyway. It's easier to do it weekly and deal with problems as they arise, instead of all at once and right before a deadline. Please use the guides in the EdFusion Help Sheets Section and work with your SIS to set these up.

  6. We have data town halls every 2 weeks leading up to and during collection windows. We also have them when we seek guidance on any changes to reporting. Please attend these as you will learn a lot from listening to others' problems before you encounter them.

  7. Please ensure you are subscribed to the AOE SLDS Contacts Mailing List. There are also archives there that will contain invites to data town halls we have every 2 weeks. If you haven't already, please reach out to the AOE - SLDS Support Group AOE.SLDSSupportGroup@vermont.gov


Data Overview 101

Below is a short overview of the collections and reporting products that AOE performs, with links to more resources about them.

Collections

Statewide Longitudinal Data System

The SLDS is intended to enhance the ability of Vermont to efficiently and accurately manage, analyze, and use education data. The SLDS should help all Vermont education stakeholders to make data-informed decisions to improve student learning and outcomes; as well as to facilitate research to increase student achievement and close achievement gaps.

Child Count

The Vermont Agency of Education uses the Child Count Collection and the Exiting Collection to report data for children with disabilities aged 3 through 21 to the U.S. Department of Education in accordance with Section 618 of the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Other uses of Child Count data include public reporting, special education funding calculations, and Annual Performance Reports.

Early Childhood Assessment

Early childhood assessments consist of TSgold gold assessment done in the fall and spring of each PreK Year. Also, in the fall of the kindergarten year teachers complete the Ready for Kindergarten Survey.

EL Primary Home Language Survey

Information is collected on English Learners through this tool for many state and federal reporting requirements.

Reporting Products:

ESSA Annual Snapshot

The Annual Snapshot is an online tool where you can find quantitative data about Vermont schools. You can see how your school, Supervisory Union/District or the state is doing, based on measures Vermont has decided are important. The Annual Snapshot exists to support schools, not rank them. The goal of the Annual Snapshot is to encourage communities to work together to improve educational outcomes for all students.

ACT 166 PreK Evaluation Report

As part of the ongoing monitoring effort for the Universal Prekindergarten program a legislative report is prepared which highlights key outcomes and equity issues for students. In addition many of the elements reporting out here also are reflected in Vermont’s profile for the National institute of Early Education Research (NIEER) yearbook report PreK Yearbook.

Vermont Education Dashboard

During each fiscal year, the Agency of Education collects data from Vermont's supervisory unions and school districts about students, staff, enrollment and assessments. The data collected help inform us, schools, educators and taxpayers about the functionality and success of Vermont's education system.

Special Education Reports

This page on the Vermont Agency of Education website holds state and local Annual Performance Reports, public reporting of Child Count data by district, and fiscal reports on special education spending.

EDFacts Reports

The main way that states are required to report data to the US Department of Education is through EdFacts files. The federal EDFacts Initiative collects, analyzes, and promotes the use of high-quality pre-kindergarten through grade 12 data nationwide.

CSPR

This is the state’s application for federal funds populated largely by EdFacts files.

Ready For Kindergarten Report

Since 2000, Vermont has gathered information on the readiness of students entering kindergarten by surveying kindergarten teachers about their students’ knowledge and skills within the first six to ten weeks of school.

ACRONYMS

Abbreviation Defintion
A4L The Access 4 Learning Community
ADM Average Daily Membership
AOE Vermont Agency of Education
CIRS Combined Incident Reporting Software
Direct Cert Direct Certifictional for FRL
EDW Education Data Warehouse
ELL English Language Learner(s)
HMH Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
LDRM Local Data Reporting Manager
NSLP National School Lunch Program
NSC National Student Clearinghouse
POS Place of Service
SECT Student Educator Course Transcript collection
SIS (Local) Student Information System
SLDS Statewide Longitudinal Data System
SU/SD Supervisory Union/Supervisory District
VR Vertical Reporting

GLOSSARY

  1. Access 4 Learning (A4L) Community: Previously known as the SIF Association, the Access 4 Learning Community is a non-profit collaboration composed of schools, districts, local authorities, states, US and International Ministries of Education, software vendors and consultants who collectively address all aspects of learning information management and access to support learning. This community is responsible for managing and expanding the “SIF” specifications.
  2. Average Daily Membership (ADM): Average Daily Membership (ADM) is a count of resident and state-placed students who receive an elementary or secondary education at public expense; data are listed by town according to a student’s residence. Resident students are counted during the period from the 11th to the 30th day of the current school year, while state-placed students are counted for the school year prior to the current census period. Data are used in calculating equalized pupils which are used to determine the homestead tax rates.
  3. Codeset: A list of allowable values that may be submitted in a data element.
  4. Composite Primary Keys: A combination of two or more elements in a submission that, taken together, uniquely identify a single row or record. This determines the ‘granularity’ of the data. (Note: All submissions use composite primary keys versus a single primary key.)
  5. Data Collection: A collection of one or more predefined groupings of submissions to the state via a vertical reporting mechanism.
  6. Data Element: A specific field in which data is collected.
  7. Granularity: The level of detail of a set of detail. Granularity for a submission is defined by the composite primary keys of a submission.
  8. Local Data Reporting Manager: For the purpose of this document, local data reporting manager refers to the person(s) responsible for managing the data in the local student information system. This person should be an expert on the data within the system. This includes understanding how the data elements are defined, primary key usage and knowledge of codesets and reporting requirements.
  9. Official Data Collection: A data collection that is implemented with more stringent business rules (than unofficial collections) because the data will be used for required state or federal reporting.

Suggested Training and Reading

  • SLDS Data Use Standards (upon which several of the following states’ work is based): https://slds.ed.gov/#program/data-use-standards
  • Training and Support for Educator Data Literacy and Use (MD, ND): https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/12982
  • Helping Educators Use Data to Support Instruction: https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/12980
  • Strategies for Building Capacity and Evaluating Stakeholder Data Use (HI, MN, MD): https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/14830
  • Maintaining Sustainable Data Use Training Programs (MN, ND, SD): https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/16961
  • South Dakota Fundamentals of Data Use Course Syllabus: https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/17772
  • State Approaches to Understanding and Improving High School Graduation - - Rates (HI, IL): https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/16863
  • At-Risk and Early Intervention Analyses to Inform Instructional Supports (MT, IL): https://slds.ed.gov/#communities/pdc/documents/18372