Choice Solutions Launches a Streamlined Data Collection & Reporting Solution for 21st Century Community Learning Centers and the States that Manage Them

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An application that saves states time and money by replacing a widely adopted paper based data collection process with a secure online alternative integrated into their existing technical infrastructure

Choice Solutions, a nationally recognized education IT solution provider, has launched their 21st Century Community Learning Center (21CCLC) Application. The solution integrates with states’ existing data systems to streamline their 21CCLC data collection, management, and reporting procedures.

21CCLC’s are federally funded programs that offer students opportunities for academic enrichment during non-school hours in an effort to ensure those students meet state and local achievement standards. While government grants do much to support these centers, they also place a major burden on the teachers, program coordinators, and states involved to collect and report detailed information regarding program operations, participation, and effectiveness. The US Department of Education requires that state level administrators manage the process of collecting and uploading this data to the Profile and Performance Information Collection System (PPICS). Each year, these administrators collectively obtain and upload program data from some 3,000 21CCLC grantees covering close to 9,000 centers serving 1.5 million student participants. All this information flows from the bottom up.

For years most states have used a widely adopted system of paper based surveys to collect the requisite information. State administrators distribute the surveys to the program coordinators and teachers in each center, once completed the surveys are sent back to the state where the information is manually converted into electronic format, undergoes a rigorous validation process, and is then transformed into the appropriate format for upload into PPICS. The cumbersome paper based process makes it difficult for states to obtain completed surveys, provides numerous opportunities for inaccurate data entry, and requires a great deal of time for data transformation, validation, and formatting. Choice’s 21CCLC Application integrates with states’ existing IT infrastructure to simplify these procedures while saving them time and money in the process.

With the application in place, a state’s data collection process is managed through a secure portal nested within their existing data system(s). Through this portal, teachers and program coordinators are provided easy access to electronic surveys in a familiar environment. On the back end, the application pulls pertinent records from the state’s existing data stores and pre-populates a portion of the survey fields to reduce both completion time and opportunities for data entry errors. This same portal provides state administrators with an intuitive interface to monitor survey completion progress as well as to manage program operational data over the course of the year. When it comes time for the state to prepare and upload the information into PPICS, the application automatically executes the detailed validation and transformation processes and produces data files that are specifically aligned to the upload requirements of PPICS.

Designed with flexible integration as a core feature, Choice’s 21CCLC Application can be cost effectively implemented in any state across the nation. Recently deployed in Wyoming utilizing state level 21CCLC funds, the solution has already shown promising results. Since its launch, a steady increase in survey completion has been observed and Wyoming is expecting a reduction in costs related to validating, transforming, and reporting 21CCLC information to the Federal Government.

About Choice Solutions, Inc.
Choice Solutions is an end-to-end global Enterprise IT Service and Solutions provider with a proud tradition of helping educational entities build better citizens for tomorrow. Founded with a vision of partnering state and local agencies, Choice offers a holistic approach to moving and delivering Education information and services to the proper stakeholders. With a portfolio of trusted and quality solutions, Choice has the privilege of serving many government organizations, including 15 state Departments of Education and numerous districts, regional education centers, and privately run agencies.

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Brennain Delaney
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