At Hearing, Democrats Highlight Importance of Investments in Education Research

WASHINGTON – Today, the full Committee on Education and the Workforce held a hearing entitled, “Protecting Privacy, Promoting Policy: Evidence-based Policymaking and the Future of Education.” There is broad, bipartisan consensus that educational research—when collected, stored, and used responsibility—is an invaluable tool that improves teaching and learning. Unfortunately, public investments in education research are not as robust as research investments used to advance policy and practice in other fields.

“Research and data are incredible tools we can utilize across all levels of education to enhance teaching and learning. We are just scratching the surface, and we cannot afford to turn away from this effort that will ultimately improve student outcomes,” said Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03). “As education technology use continues to expand, we must take the necessary steps to protect the privacy and data of students and their families. Congress must ensure student data is being used for only defined educational purposes and cannot be sold or used for private companies’ financial gain.”  

There is bipartisan agreement that education data is a transformative tool for students, teachers, parents, administrators, and policymakers. Data empowers teachers and guides individualized learning, allowing teachers to quickly identify and address gaps in achievement before students fall behind.

We use data and evidence-based research in every part of our work, because we know that high-quality data is necessary to provide the insights and understanding education leaders need to make the best decisions for students,” said Dr. Carey M. Wright,  State Superintendent of Education for Mississippi.

Congress must invest in education research? at the same time we must also modernize federal privacy protections to strike a balance between the benefits of innovation and protecting student information in the age of technology. Today’s hearing is an important step towards prioritizing quality student learning, protecting student data, and promoting education service delivery that works for all.

OPENING STATEMENT: Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03)

WITNESS TESTIMONY: Carey M. Wright, Ed.D., State Superintendent of Education for Mississippi


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