AEM Blue

AEM has supported the U.S. Department of Education (ED) since 2011 through technical assistance (TA) to State Education Agencies for the design, development, implementation, and use of education and workforce data for better decision-making.

In supporting all 55 states and territories with their Statewide Longitudinal Data System (SLDS) work, regardless of grant status, we make resources, meetings, and conferences available and accessible to all. As result, nearly all states now have an SLDS that includes at least K12 student data.

Beyond promoting resource accessibility, we have sought to leverage our efforts to provide broader insights to ED. We now incorporate an ongoing evaluative component to our TA work based on grantee and SLDS-community wide information. This allows us to leverage our own data to understand progress and make changes as needed. We share out our findings using the TA Request manager within AEM’s GRADS360° platform, giving program officers the ability to assess grantee progress along with the types and frequency of TA we are providing.

Part of our evaluative effort includes assessing grantee activities and outcomes to understand how capacity increases each year of the grant. As the first to analyze and document this evolution, we substantiate claims about the types of activities and capacity-building that occur across a grant cycle. These findings inform future efforts for future grant rounds to provide more proactive support around our capacity areas.