• January-February 2016
  • Vol. 16, No. 10

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Data Sharing Between Child Welfare, Education Systems

The Child Welfare and Education Learning Community (CWELC) is a collaboration between researchers, practitioners, and policymakers in Illinois, Minnesota, and North Carolina that seeks to address issues relevant to the child welfare and education systems. One of the areas CWELC is assessing is how agencies collect, share, and use data to analyze and improve services to children and families. A recent CWELC report outlines the data-sharing efforts in these three States, as well as select examples from other locales, and presents recommendations for improvement, which include the following:

  • Child welfare and education professionals need to be supported in gathering data.
  • Data-sharing agreements must be established to protect student confidentiality while facilitating coordinated care between child welfare and education systems.
  • Data systems must be co-developed by professionals from both child welfare and education agencies to gather, share, and use information in easily adaptable ways.
  • Data must be aggregated regularly to maintain system accountability and promote informed policy decision-making.
  • Data must be shareable in real time to aid child welfare service providers and educators in making informed decisions that enable the delivery of coordinated services to students in child welfare.

To view the report, Get the Data, Share the Data, Use the Data: Recommendations From the Three-State Child Welfare and Education Learning Community (CWELC) Project, visit http://www.extension.umn.edu/family/cyfc/our-programs/cwelc/docs/cwelc-report.pdf (1 MB).

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