From Data to Opportunity

By Michael Douglas, Akron Beacon Journal 

Dec. 13, 2014

Derran Wimer knows how well a child entering kindergarten will perform in school. Or at least he has a good idea. The executive director of the Summit Education Initiative has pulled together the data showing that children who score 19 or higher on the kindergarten readiness assessment in literacy have a 90 percent likelihood of passing the third grade reading test.

Which puts them on a track to succeed in eighth grade math, graduate from high school, score 21 or better on the ACT and enter college more likely to gain a degree.

Wimer and his SEI colleagues have identified key “transition points.” Arrive at these markers with the necessary knowledge and skills, and the road ahead opens for students, the continuum from “cradle to career.”

The challenge for the community involves seizing the advantage of the data, mobilizing resources to see that opportunity visits even disadvantaged children, or those in or near poverty. It starts, as Russ Pry, the county executive, emphasizes with “first things first,” with a focus on early education.

Read the full story here