On Tuesday, the Los Angeles Board of Education moved the second largest school system in the nation towards greater transparency and accountability with the approval of the “LAUSDATA: Los Angeles Unified Sharing Data for Accessibility, Transparency and Accountability” resolution. Introduced by Board Vice President Nick Melvoin, LAUSDATA calls for the adoption of an Open Data Policy, the creation of an LAUSD Open Data Portal website, and the designation of an Open Data Officer to oversee this work. VICA supported this measure in keeping with our stance for government to be more transparent and responsive.
Increased transparency is positive for taxpayers and government. While some of the District’s data is already publicly available, it can be difficult for citizens to access and understand. Investing resources into developing an interactive website will help parents, students, educators, policymakers, the media, researchers, and businesses understand both the big picture and the small details of District data ranging from budgets to test scores.
LAUSDATA is modeled after similar initiatives, notably Mayor Eric Garcetti’s “DataLA” and Controller Ron Galperin’s “ControlPanel LA.” Both efforts centralize large amounts of information and present it in a way that is easy to navigate and understand, ultimately allowing Angelenos to analyze the City’s budget and its programs.
LAUSDATA will democratize data so that the public is able to engage and participate in the District’s progress toward goals like 100% graduation, literacy and numeracy for all, closing achievement gaps, and college and career readiness for all students.
The LAUSD Open Data Portal will help foster meaningful engagement between stakeholders and the District, as well as promote greater transparency and accountability. VICA commends the Board of Education for approving the “LAUSDATA” resolution.