Data Sharing: Federal Rules and Best Practices to Improve Out-of- School-Time Programs and Student Outcomes

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Research and experience tell us that coordinated data-sharing between schools and OST partners can improve the quality of OST programs and provide better learning outcomes for the students they serve. Unfortunately, the primary federal policy that protects the security and confidentiality of individual student information, known as Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), has consistently been cited as a roadblock for school systems and their
OST partners to share student data in a coordinated approach to improve education programs and student outcomes.

This policy brief seeks to demonstrate that FERPA can allow for data-sharing between schools and OST partners, and why it is a best practice to do so. By outlining examples from the field,
this paper aims to pave the way for more OST programs and their school partners to use student data to improve educational outcomes and opportunities for all students.