In December 2017, with support from the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, SETDA collaborated with the Ed-Fi Alliance to host a symposium regarding state interoperability efforts. A cohort of nine state teams, in conjunction with private sector leaders and content experts engaged in a focused discussion on the challenges, successes, and future needs to support interoperability in state K12 education. State teams included both academic and technology leaders.

As state leaders from across departments within state education agencies have shifted from traditional instructional methods and print materials to digital instructional materials and towards personalized learning, it is increasingly important for the academic leaders, digital learning leaders, and infrastructure leaders to be a part of the data interoperability conversation around the needs and the solutions for learning in their state. Goals:

  • State teams will come to agreement on the role interoperability plays in meeting learning goals.
  • State teams will share with interoperability leaders and private sector partners what has worked well for their state and what the key challenges are with interoperability.
  • State teams will create a plan for moving forward with interoperability in their state.
  • State teams, interoperability leaders, and private sector partners will determine what support is needed for state leaders moving forward and to support additional states.
  • Data will be collected from the Summit conversations and analysis performed/compiled into a report to share with the field regarding state level interoperability

State Teams: In order to have a robust conversation and create a common understanding of the underlying challenges with interoperability for states, each state should bring a team of 3 – 4 leaders that will include some combination of academic and technology roles such as: Educational Technology Director,Chief Academic Officer (CAO) or Instructional Leader, Chief Information Officer (CIO), Finance Director, Assessment Leader, District Leader, Higher Education Leader and/or State Board of Education Member

Teams participated from the following states: Delaware, Georgia, Michigan, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah, Wisconsin & Wyoming

This Summit supported the development of the Leveraging Data for Academic Excellence report which highlights how state leaders tackle data interoperability with the emergence of data standards for student information, assessment, digital content, and other educational applications. While states are at various maturity levels for interoperability, each state shares goals for interoperability, the drivers for those goals, current status and use cases, as well as some of the challenges in the process. Private sector partners share observations, perceptions of states’ status in the interoperability process, as well as some of the pain points from the vendor perspective. State and private sector leaders identify recommendations and the next steps necessary to continue the conversations within states, among states, and with the private sector to develop cohesive data interoperability practices to achieve student learning goals.



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