Building and Using Data Systems

Last Reviewed Date
January 22, 2023

Strong early childhood systems and initiatives rely on the successful collection, use, and integration of quality data. This page provides toolkits, reports, briefs, webinars, and other materials designed to help states, leaders, early childhood professionals, and strategic partners. The materials can help these groups determine their data needs, adopt best practices for data collection and use, and learn from states that have been using robust data systems to better serve children and families.

Developing Programmatic Use Cases Webinar

This webinar explains the benefits and uses of a programmatic use case engaging stakeholers in the process. 

Using Data to Support Systems Building Activities: PDG B-5 Application Review and Impact of COVID-19 on Grant Activities

This report discusses the impact COVID-19 has had on the PDG B-5 Renewal Grantees plan to develop an early childhood data system.

How Pennsylvania Used Data to Distribute CARES Act Funds Equitably During the COVID-19 Pandemic

This State Highlight describes Pennsylvania’s ECIDS and how state leaders used it to equitably distribute CARES Act funds among providers.

Tips for Collecting, Reporting, and Using Data in Early Childhood Care and Education

This tip sheet on data systems compiles suggestions to improve the accuracy and usefulness of data collected and reported in early childhood care and education.

PDG B-5 TA Center 2020 Annual Meeting - Data Systems Strand Opening Session

Presenters reviewed solutions to pressing data issues and the organizational needs to support the ongoing data analytic and information needs across state agencies.

PDG B-5 Data Governance Community of Conversation (CoC)

This session will assist with understanding the key elements of data governance and strategies for establishing a strong data governance framework.

PDG B-5 Data Privacy Community of Conversation (CoC)

This session guides grantees through discussions, considerations, and pitfalls to avoid when it comes to sharing data across data systems and organizations.

PDG B-5 Data Integration Community of Conversation (CoC)

This session focuses on the challenges and lessons learned related to the integration of data from multiple partners, systems, programs and agencies.

PDG B-5 Data Privacy and Early Childhood Data Sharing - Lessons Learned from Utah

Lessons Learned from Utah around EC data systems, EC data integration, and documentation

SLDS Early Childhood Integrated Data System Guide

This toolkit focuses beyond planning for an Early Childhood Integrated Data System (ECIDS) to include implementation and continuous improvement.

SLDS Issue Brief: A Primer on Distinct Count of Children

This document defines the "Distinct Count" metric as it relates to childhood policy and programmatic analyses and describes factors contributing towards it.

SLDS Issue Brief: Unique Identifiers Beyond K12

This brief supports ECIDS leaders in understanding a unique identifier (UID) and discusss the benefit of assigning UIDs in early childhood.

How Policymakers Can Support Early Childhood Data Governance

This brief highlights actions steps for policymakers to support establishing governance structures to increase access to data to inform early childhood policies and practice.

Using Integrated Data to Answer Critical Policy Questions

This webinar features recommendations from the report documenting how states successfully used integrated data systems.

Workforce Data Deficit Hinders Preparation, Support, and Compensation of Early Childhood Educators

This blog highlights the importance of using high-quality comprehensive data to inform workforce policy decisions.

The Why and How of State Early Childhood Data Systems 

This paper provides guidance about developing statewide early childhood data systems and assessing data collection and analysis.

Data Culture Toolkit

This toolkit helps Part C and Part B 619 program staff build effective data teams and support conditions for a culture of data use at the state and local levels.

Data Goverance Toolkit

This toolkit assists Part C and Part B 619 program staff with creating or enhancing their data governance policies and procedures.

Data Visualization Toolkit

This toolkit that contains resources about best practices in design principles and data considerations in visualizations.

School Readiness Tool

This video presents an analytic tool used by states to report student school readiness and address school and student group needs and existent supports.

Integrated Data Tools to Inform Efforts to Improve School Readiness

This brief that provides an introduction to a school readiness framework as an example of an analytic tool to guide evidence-based program and policy decisions.

Community Assessment Tool

This video highlights the benefits of using an assessment tool to curate data from many sources to inform policymakers and community members and other stakeholders.

Approaches and Tools to Coordinate Early Childhood Programs and Services

This brief explains how a community assessment framework can guide states to integrate and use early childhood data across eligibility, access, services, and impact.

Data Governance Dashboard

This video that highlights the benefits of using the data governance dashboard integrated data systems to gather and study the data.

Data Story Builder

This website features resources that explain the power of data stories as an effective tool for communicating early childhood integrated data and information.

The History and Evolution of Early Childhood Integrated Data Systems

This podcast that explains the history and evolution of early childhood integrated data systems (ECIDS) in the United States.

Which System Model is Best for Our State ECIDS?

This brief describes technical approaches to building an early childhood integrated data system (ECIDS): centralized model, federated model, and hybrid model.

The Integration of Early Childhood Data

This report that provides best practices for using existing administrative data to improve services, including how states can use integrated early childhood data to inform decisions.

Unique Identifiers: Beyond K12

This brief explains the benefit of assigning Unique Identifiers (UIDs) in early childhood, describes possible approaches to assigning UIDs.

Conducting a Needs Assessment and Strategic Plan for State Initiatives

This decision tree offers considerations for using an early childhood integrated data system (ECIDS) in state early childhood needs assessments and strategic planning.

SLDS Early Childhood Integrated Data System Self-Assessment – System Design

This toolkit guides states to self-assess where they are in the system design process for developing an early childhood integrated data system (ECIDS).

Developing Presentation and Conceptual Diagrams for ECIDS

This brief explains strategies for developing a communication plan about an early childhood integrated data system (ECIDS).

Common Education Data Standards Mapping Toolkit

This toolkit contains tools for mapping local data elements to the Common Education Data Standards (CEDS).

A Toolkit for Centering Racial Equity Throughout Data Integration

This toolkit explains considering racial equity throughout the data life cycle, including data's planning, collection, access, analysis, and reporting and dissemination.

Data Breach Response Training

This training kit is an exercise to assist schools, districts, and other educational organizations with internal data security training.

Guidance Applying FERPA and HIPAA to Student Health Records

This guidance document clarifies how FERPA and HIPAA apply to education and health records maintained about students.

Written Agreement Checklist

This checklist summarizes the requirements for the written agreements under the studies exception and the audit or evaluation exception as specified FERPA.

Using Data to Understand Your Program

This framework helps organizations think about how already collected data may help answer questions about their program or identify areas for improvement.