Episode 9: Helping State Agencies Build and Modernize Integrated Data Systems
“At DISC, our primary focus is to help states modernize their data systems to support evidence-based policymaking. We really seek to serve as thought partners helping triage the root of the problem.” —Sean Cottrell, Director of Operations for the Data Integration Support Center (DISC) at WestEd
States are working to build and modernize integrated data systems to help public agencies better understand and respond to the needs of students, families, and communities, which is critical in the post COVID–19 era. To integrate data from across sectors effectively, states need to consider many legal and technical challenges, as well as data privacy concerns and system security.
In this episode, host Danny Torres talks with Baron Rodriguez, Executive Director for WestEd’s Data Integration Support Center (DISC), and Sean Cottrell, Director of Operations of DISC, about the Center’s comprehensive services and why integrating data from across sectors—including education, workforce, social services, and criminal justice—can help state leaders and policymakers address the needs of the whole child, the whole person, and the whole community.
Their conversation covers the following topics:
- how DISC services can support public agencies, often at no cost
- why integrated data systems are important in the post-COVID era
- DISC’s five areas of support: planning and user-centered design, legislative analysis, external legal supports, privacy, and system security
Baron serves as the Data Integration Support Center’s Executive with over 20 years’ experience leading data integration efforts with a focus on privacy, architecture, security, and governance. He is a national expert on the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
Sean is the Director of Operations at the Data Integration Support Center. He provides strategic oversight for the Center and is a senior subject matter expert on privacy law and governance. He also serves as partnership director for the Center, seeking opportunities to advance the development of integrated data systems.
Leading Voices Podcast Series Episode 4: The REMIQS Project and State School Accountability Systems—A Conversation with Dr. Raifu Durodoye
In this episode, host Danny Torres and Dr. Raifu Durodoye, Senior Research Associate at WestEd, discuss the REMIQS project, a multi-state, mixed-methods investigation designed to explore how we can best serve our most vulnerable learners. Their conversation focuses on expanding measures of school quality and reframing (remixing) accountability systems in ways that can support all learners.
Leading Voices Podcast Series Episode 6: Advancing Evidence-Based Practices in the REL West and Northwest Regions—A Conversation with Katie Drummond and John Rice
In this episode, Danny Torres talks with two Regional Educational Laboratory Directors about the effects of the pandemic, accelerating learning, and ongoing projects designed to improve outcomes for students.
Leading Voices Podcast Series Episode 8: How States Can Attract and Sustain Teachers—A Conversation with Caitlin Beatson and Kate Wright
In this episode, host Marley Arechiga talks with Caitlin Beatson, Deputy Director of the Region 2 Comprehensive Center at WestEd, and Kate Wright, Director of the Region 15 Comprehensive Center, about building a robust educator workforce.