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ERC Data Warehouse
One of the key components of the Education Research Centers (ERC) is the ERC data warehouse. The ERC data warehouse is a repository of educational data from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and the Texas Higher Education Board (THECB). Information from the TEA contained in the data warehouse includes PK-12 student, staff, financial, and organization data, and information from the THECB includes student enrollment, graduation, and admissions data. The master copy of the ERC data warehouse is hosted at the THECB, and three copies exist, one at each of the three ERCs. For the first time, researchers across Texas have ready access to a complete database about students from pre-kindergarten through post-secondary education.
Because the student data contained in the ERC data warehouse are subject to federal Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulations, compliance with FERPA is critical to the operation and success of the ERCs. TEA and THECB jointly have implemented numerous mechanisms to protect the privacy of Texas students.
Some examples of these protective mechanisms include:
The names, social security numbers, and dates of birth of all students and staff are not contained in the ERC data warehouse. Instead, the TEA and the THECB remove the confidential data and assign alternative IDs that enable researchers to track individual students or staff longitudinally without knowing who students or staff actually are. At no time will researchers have access to social security numbers (SSNs), names, or dates of birth. However, because small cells are not removed from the student data, the ERC data warehouse is still subject to all FERPA regulations.
All researchers with approved access to these data are required to sign a confidentiality agreement that states they will comply with the FERPA regulations.
Each ERC is subject to a security audit by both their university and the Texas Department of Information Resources.
ERCs are bound by contract to ensure that no electric data files or copies of the ERC data are permitted to leave the ERC's facilities. Also, print outs of the results of analyses may leave the ERC only after ERC staff have ensured that confidential data are not included. All research products (e.g., reports, presentations) generated from analyses of ERC data must also be checked by persons not involved in the research to ensure that small numbers are masked before publication or release.
Adding Supplemental Data
Mechanisms were also created to enable researchers to add supplemental data to a specific ERC's data warehouse for use only in a particular research project. In cases where these supplemental data must be matched with ERC data, the TEA and THECB will receive new data, de-identify them, and match them with the alternative IDs contained in the ERC data warehouse. To comply with FERPA, these supplemental data files must have a destruction date that corresponds with the end of the particular research project.
As of April 2010, the ERC data warehouse contains the following TEA data:
• Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS)
• State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC)
• Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (TAAS)
• State-Developed Alternative Assessment (SDAA)
• Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS)
• Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS)
District and campus actual financial data
District and campus budgeted financial data
District and campus staff employment data
District and campus organizational data
Student demographic data
Student special education data
Student attendance data
Student course completion data
Student disciplinary data
Student graduation, leaver, and dropout data
TAKS data, all grades, all subjects, all version, Spanish and English
SBEC data (test and certification data)
TEA will update these data as they become available.
As of April 2010, the ERC data warehouse contains the following THECB data:
- Coordinating Board Management (CBM) Report 1 - Student Enrollment
- Community College : Fall 1992 - Fall 2010
- University : Fall 1992 - Fall 2010
- Health Institution : Fall 1992 - Fall 2010
- CBM Report 2 - Texas Academic Skills Program (through 2003) / Texas Success Initiative (after 2003)
- Fall 1990 - Fall 2007
- (All institution types in same files)
- CBM Report 4 - Class Report
- Community / Technical College : Fall 2000 - Fall 2010
- University : Fall 2000 - Fall 2010
- CBM Report 8 - Faculty Report (Annual files)
- Community / Technical College : Fall 2000 - Fall 2010
- Health : Fall 2001 - Fall 2010
- University : Fall 200 - Fall 2010
- CBM Report 9 - Graduates / degrees awarded (Annual files)
- Community College : 1990 - 2009
- University : 1990 - 2009
- Health Institution : 1990 - 2009
- CBM Report A - Continuing education courses
- Community / Technical : 2000 - 2009
- CBM Report B - Admissions (Annual files)
- Public University : 2000 - 2009
- CBM Report C - Continuing education class report
- Community / Technical : Fall 2000 - Fall 2009
- CBM Report M - Marketable skill achievement (Annual files)
- Community / Technical : 2002 - 2009
THECB will update these data as they become available.
As of April 2010, the ERC data warehouse contains the following non-agency data:
- National Student Clearinghouse (in process = 2003-2010)
- ACT (American College Testing)
- College Board Data
- SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) - (in process)
- PSAT (in process)
- PLAN (in process)
- AP (in process)
- Texas Workforce Commision (TWC) : 1999 - 2010