For those of you who have been following the building of state longitudinal data systems, the Common Data Standards Initiative's Technical Working Group has released its first set of voluntary common data standards, intended to make it easier to compare and exchange information across districts and states.
The consortium's Technical Working Group reads like a who's who among data watchers—the National Center for Education Statistics, the Data Quality Campaign, the State Interoperability Framework, the Council of Chief State School Officers, etc. —and this is their attempt to get state data systems, if not on the same page, at least using the same dictionary.
The standards provide states with definitions for commonly used data indicators, which comes in handy not just for researchers digging through data but more day-to-day issues, such as forwarding a student's transcript to another state or giving principals information about the progress of their graduates in college. The standards are also hoped to bolster the Common Core State Standards, newly released by the CCSSO and National Governors Association.
Keep an eye out later this week for more in-depth coverage of the new standards by my colleague Dakarai Aarons over at State Ed Watch.