Accountability, Program Budgeting, and the California Educational Information System

A Discussion and a Proposal

by John A. Farquhar

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It has been argued that the answer to public and political demands for a more responsive educational system lies in the practice of accountability. The future implementation of program budgeting may offer an attractive vehicle for accountability. Currently, many California school districts use the California Educational Information System (CEIS) as a primary vehicle for information storage, processing, and retrieval. Although adequate for present needs, the configuration of CEIS will be ill-suited to effectively support accountability and program budgeting. This report recommends that the Legislature create an Advisory Commission on Information Systems to define the structure and services of CEIS II, a statewide information system designed to support accountability and program budgeting. The development of CEIS II requires system definition to determine information needs, transitional mechanisms, legislative and economic framework, security and privacy issues, and functional system design to translate needs into specifications for subsequent programming and testing.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Report series. The report was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1993 that represented the principal publication documenting and transmitting RAND's major research findings and final research.

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