How we selected and vetted the indicators
- The indicators are rigorous. All data must meet the generally accepted standards for rigor within the field of educational measurement. All data and collection methods are examined to ensure policymakers, educators, parents and students can make valid inferences about the nation's current status on each indicator.
- The indicators are measurable on a regular basis. A key concern for the commission is determining the degree to which progress is made over time on the goal and 10 recommendations. Therefore, only data sources available on a regular basis are included in this report. One-time reports, although helpful in providing a snapshot of the status of the nation on the goal and recommendations, will not aid in helping track progress over the coming years.
- The indicators can be disaggregated. Whenever possible, indicators are applicable to the nation and comparable across the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The commission's recommendations concern the entire nation, thus the indicators have a national focus. Importantly, individual states are conducting excellent work to allow policymakers and citizens within those states to track the status and note the trends on the goal and recommendations put forth by the commission. Many states, such as Florida, have already built state-level data systems that are being used to track students from preschool to college completion. Only indicators available on a national basis are featured. This is a report on the nation's status on the commission's goal and 10 recommendations. The indicators highlighted in this report represent those data that are available to help policymakers, educators, parents and students understand where the nation stands on the goal. As policies and practices continue to change, future iterations of this report may include new indicators that may be added or obsolete indicators removed to ensure that the indicators associated with each recommendation note the nation's status and subsequent progress on the commission's goal and 10 recommendations.
For the Hispanic Edition, where it is not possible to disaggregate this state-level data by race/ethnicity, overall state data is provided, but particular focus is given to those ten states that account for the majority (78.3%) of the national Hispanic population.