The Research Department’s primary goal is to understand and analyze the policies and programs implemented by ISBE. In line with ISBE's Strategic Plan, the work of the Research Department examines data pertaining to student learning, learning conditions, and the educator pipeline. The four key areas of focus are Assessment, Elevating Educators, Resource Allocation, and State Systems of Support. Projects undertaken by the department vary widely but are rooted in supporting ISBE to fulfill its broader mission to “provide each and every child with safe and healthy learning conditions, great educators, and equitable opportunities by practicing data-informed stewardship of resources and police development, all done in partnership with educators, families, and stakeholders."
Our work is steered by the four principles that guide every decision at ISBE: Equity, Quality, Collaboration, and Community. The department uses research tools to support the state's equity goals by evaluating the policies, programs, and practices in place throughout the state. In doing this, we continue to affirm the strengths of all children and to deliver research on the comprehensive support, programs, and educational opportunities they need to thrive and succeed.
We believe in conveying information truthfully with verifiable methods, following accepted research and ethical codes and norms, employing the scientific method, and utilizing qualitative and quantitative data to uncover facts that speak for themselves and are reported precisely. We acknowledge that research relies upon the trust and confidence of the research community and public at large.
The Research Department partners with external agencies and other departments within ISBE to formulate research questions, understand trends, and analyze the work being done across the state. The department works with the other Research and Evaluation Center departments, including Data Strategies and Analytics, Software Solutions, and Assessment, to refine research questions and help to understand the data used across the center. In addition, the department works closely with other program offices when developing research proposals. See the description of each of the four key areas of focus and some of the projects the department is working on.