Q&A with Caroline Galindo: What you need to know about this year’s Data Champion Summit!

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Caroline Galindo Impact Team Lead, Schoolzilla

In less than two months, Data Champions nationwide will join us in Berkeley, CA for this year’s Data Champion Summit. What makes this the perfect opportunity for K-12 data enthusiasts, and how does this year’s summit differ from last years? Caroline Galindo, Impact Team Lead for Schoolzilla, shares all the important details.

Q: What is a Data Champion and what makes a great one?
A: Data Champions are the people in school systems who collect data; make sure data is clean; cull insight from data; and share that insight with the appropriate stakeholders. Any of those pieces can be a huge job—it’s why Schoolzilla exists, and it’s why Data Champions rarely work alone.

Great Data Champions work hard to stay focused on their stakeholders’ needs, and by extension, their students. They understand that strong relationships are just as important as their technical and number skills—they’re what helps them understand stakeholders’ goals and questions. It takes an incredibly wide range of skills to be a great Data Champion, and we are constantly inspired by the folks in our community.

Q: The theme of this year’s Data Champion Summit is “Better Together”. Can you share what this theme means to Schoolzilla and for attendees?
A: “Better Together” is one of Schoolzilla’s core values. We know we can achieve greater success when working together; that’s why we’re committed to collaborating within teams, across teams, and with school systems.

“Better Together” also reflects what we’ve learned over time from our great Data Championsthat culling actionable, transformative insights from data is a system-wide effort. Data evolves when Data Champions, CAOs, Grade Level Leads, Superintendents, etc., work together to have data-informed conversations based on a deep understanding of how people work, as well as their questions, priorities, and goals.

Data Champion Summit ‘16 provides the opportunity for Data Champions to collaborate, learn new skills, and gather resources to foster a data-driven culture.

Q: For returning Data Champion Summit attendees, what new sessions are available that weren’t offered last year?
A: We’ve been working hard to develop new content for this year’s Data Champion Summit. Our New Tableau sessions teach folks everything they need to know about Tableau 9. Our Product sessions include Interventions Data Block and Zillametrics (neither existed last year!). And in the spirit of Better Together, we’ve also added a Leadership strand specifically designed with system influencers in mind, as well as a Deep Dives strand around specific content areas to help answer the key question: “I have all this data and insight, but now what?”.

Q: What excites you most about the 2016 Data Champion Summit?
A: Rarely do we have the opportunity to have all of our Data Champions in one place. With a vast network of Data Champions and leaders at this year’s DSC, we’re thrilled about the opportunity to facilitate connections. We also have quite a few former Data Champions at Schoolzilla, and it’s been really fun to create a conference that our former (and current!) selves would love. We can’t wait to hear about what you think of this year’s Data Champion Summit (and if you’re not registered, there’s still time, just click here).