We believe that UPD was put on this Earth to help states, districts, and schools perform at fundamentally higher levels. Kids and parents deserve it, and our ever-globalizing economy needs it.

As I reflect on our work at UPD over the past decade, it has become clear that the use of data is central to public education’s transformation.

But, I also know that implementing the work to create a data-driven school district is some of the hardest work there is. Research from Davis and Venkatesh found that technology and data projects fail more than 60 percent of the time in the private sector. No doubt it’s higher in education.

As a field we must get better at using data, and we have to start today. To help, UPD has assembled what we consider the building blocks of research and best practice on how data and technology can have impact. This work draws from all fields, not just education.

In the Data Use Five we hope to illuminate what it takes to build the systems—both human and technical—that allow data to have the impact we know it can.

So take a look and let us know what you think.