youth development data

How SETS Makes Your Data Work for You

Transforming Observations into Data

Does your program work to see students as individuals and teach to their strengths? If so, this post is for you.

These days, we can’t make it far without running into data. People may be more or less the same as we were fifty years ago, but the collection and use of our contact points with the environment have become increasingly complex and targeted. Since advertisers are able to effectively market down to the individual consumer, it should also be possible to make your data work for you.

How can you apply the immense value of the information you receive in a way that serves your program as well as it has served sales? Merge Education has developed an evaluation system that will empower your students through their individuality. SETS (Student Evaluation & Tracking System) meets each learner where they are, creating a baseline for their progress based on their goals, their relationships, and their own reporting of their self-esteem. Our system measures progress in both technical competence and social and emotional growth so that you can demonstrate and develop the efficacy of your program.

A Variety of Feedback for Comprehensive Oversight

By allowing students, staff, and people of significance in the students’ lives to provide feedback, SETS allows you to create multifaceted and balanced assessments and reports. SETS anchors traditionally qualitative concepts to specific numerical points with detailed guides so that your staff can assess their students with confidence that their feedback is grounded in direct interaction and observation. In so doing, mood, bias, and other unhelpful factors are greatly limited. The product of this feedback is reports within reference ranges that have come from decades of programming experience combined with thoughtful research in the social sciences.

Running any kind of extracurricular programming comes with an overwhelming number of administrative tasks like scheduling, staffing, and maintaining biographical and demographic records. For many programs, tracking the progress of individual students doesn’t even make it onto the to-do list.

SETS creates a single space for all of the above, cleanly and simply tying your students’ participation and background information to their personal progress. Organizing this data within a single system creates the opportunity for teachers to be more deliberate, to grow in their own performance, and to deeply understand what the individual student needs most to feel empowered and to excel.

Empower Students through Your Observations

We’ve all felt seen by marketers, often to a degree that makes us feel uncomfortable. Imagine when the students in your program feel truly seen by your staff, and then imagine you were able to show the benefits of this exchange to all of the stakeholders in the process, whether it’s parents, funders, or referring programs. SETS helps you to do this. Help your staff to empower your students as individuals while benefiting your program with data that provides words for the previously indescribable. We can do better with our data. SETS can help.

Christina Lengyel
Christina Lengyel
Christina Rockey is a writer, editor, and educator who has worked in corporate, academic, and non-profit settings. She loves to find and foster the light in people and ideas, and she believes empathy is our most essential skill.

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