Skip Navigation
ZoomWV
Main Content

Frequently Asked Questions

General ZoomWV Questions

What is ZoomWV?

ZoomWV is West Virginia's new tool for organizing and reporting educational information about public schools in the Mountain State. ZoomWV uses our underlying State Longitudinal Data System (SLDS), also known as WVEIS, to serve as the state's single source for high-quality, accurate, and accessible educational information.

What is an SLDS?

An SLDS is a state-level data system that maintains educationally related information about students over time. The West Virginia Education Information System (WVEIS), which has been used since 1990, is West Virginia's SLDS. With more than two decades of experience with WVEIS, West Virginia has been one of the leaders in the nation in developing and maintaining an SLDS. WVEIS keeps track of students' education records from the time they enter school in the state through their graduation (or a move out of state). Regardless of where in the state a student enrolls, their information is maintained in WVEIS. ZoomWV is taking the information already stored in WVEIS and making it available — in a secure way — for better educational decision making.

Why is ZoomWV being developed?

ZoomWV will drive educational initiatives to improve instruction and student performance by supplying data that can help make policy and practice decisions for West Virginia, districts, and schools.

Why is it called "ZoomWV"?

WVDE wants education stakeholders — that is, teachers, policy makers, parents, and so on — to be able to focus on the most important information for improving the education system in our state. Sometimes we need to "zoom out" and look at the big picture of state-level performance. Sometimes we need to "zoom in" and look at the finer details of local performance at the school or even classroom level. Our new system enables us to refocus the level of detail quickly and easily. Hence the name, ZoomWV!

Is this related to the Common Core?

No. People mean a lot of different things when they say "Common Core." Some people mean the Common Core State Standards. Some mean the West Virginia Next Generation Standards, which are based on the Common Core State Standards but customized specifically for West Virginia students. Others mean multi-state assessment consortia like Smarter Balanced. ZoomWV has nothing to do with any of those. ZoomWV is simply about storing our education data securely and making it available for stakeholders to use as they look for ways to improve our education system and help all students achieve.

How does ZoomWV work?

ZoomWV securely links educational data that already reside within the West Virginia Education Information System (WVEIS). In other words, it pulls data that are already available within WVEIS, loads data into a new data warehouse, and links the data together.

ZoomWV contains four components plus the data governance structure at WVDE. The four components of ZoomWV are:

  • Data Warehouse — Repository that will store student, teacher and school data from various sources over many years.
  • Portal — Secure place where users can access and interact with data from the warehouse (there will be a public-facing site, as there is currently, and a secure, access-specific site for educators to be able to log in. Teachers, for example, would have access only to the student information for the students they teach.).
  • Reports — Tools that will allow users to create custom reports and analyze key data.
  • Training — Opportunities to learn about how to use ZOOMWV for informing practice/decisions.

What information is in ZoomWV?

ZoomWV compiles and reports several educational indicators and outcomes from West Virginia Education Information System (WVEIS) for all school years since 2004. Although WVEIS has been in place since 1990, making West Virginia a leader in the development and use of an SLDS, it was not until 2004 that the state implemented a strategy for assigning stable, unique identification numbers for students.

The information available in ZoomWV will change over time as we progress through the launch phases. By the end of Phase 3, stakeholders will be able to access information about

  • Enrollment
  • Attendance
  • Graduation rates
  • Dropout rates
  • Discipline incidents
  • Course enrollment and completion
  • Grades
  • Assessment results
  • Early warning indicators
  • School accountability (Designations, Annual Measurable Objectives)

ZoomWV users will have different levels of access to the information based on their roles and needs. Educators will have secure access to student-level data; the public will have access to aggregate, or grouped, information.

When will the data be updated in ZoomWV?

The information stored in the ZoomWV data warehouse will be updated on a regular basis. Some information — such as discipline incidents — will be updated on a nightly basis to allow school staff to use real-time data for decision making. Other information — such as assessment results and school designations — will be updated annually as the data become available.

Why is ZoomWV important?

The process used to supply data in ZoomWV will increase data validity and availability for reporting and analysis used by teachers, schools, districts, the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) as well as end users, such as policymakers and researchers — all while adhering to strict privacy and security rules so as to not disclose personally identifiable information.

Who can access ZoomWV?

A public reporting site has been created so that everyone can have access to certain aggregate (or group level) information. Data in the public site will never contain individual student information, but anyone is able to visit the ZoomWV Data Dashboard in order to find group aggregate data for topics like enrollment, attendance, or graduation rate.

Teachers and local administrators will also be provided access to a secure site in ZoomWV, allowing them to see student-level information to make decisions in their classrooms and schools. However, teachers will only be able to see student-level information for students in in their classroom, and principals will only be able to see student-level information for students in their school.

How do I use ZoomWV?

VersiFit Technologies and the West Virginia Department of Education have made every reasonable effort to ensure that users are able to find and use the data in ZoomWV. Training resources like the Quick Start Guide, technical FAQs, and a short instructional video are all posted on the ZoomWV Data Dashboard Homepage. Additional training activities have been planned for a variety of audiences. Anyone interested in further detail regarding ZoomWV training can visit the ZoomWV Training website for more information.

When will ZoomWV be finished?

Routine maintenance and quality control efforts will occur on a continuous basis to ensure that ZoomWV is accurate complete, and relevant to data being collected in West Virginia's public pre-Kindergarten through grade 12 education system. However, the initial launch of ZoomWV will occur in three main phases.

Phase 1 (occurring in Fall 2014) will include the launch of the public reporting site. Data elements like school designations, enrollment, graduation rate, dropout rate, and attendance will be incorporated into public reporting during Phase 1.

Phase 2 (occurring in Winter 2014-2015) will include the launch of the private reporting site and additional elements to the public reporting site. Data elements like assessment and discipline will be incorporated into the public reporting during Phase 2. Data elements like enrollment, graduation rate, attendance rate, discipline, courses, GPA, and select assessments will be incorporated into secure reporting during Phase 2.

Phase 3 (occurring in Spring 2015) will include the addition of any aggregate and student level data of interest that was not included in Phase 1 or 2.

Who is VersiFit Technologies, and what do they have to do with ZoomWV?

VersiFit Technologies is the company that has been hired by the West Virginia Department of Education to build ZoomWV. The West Virginia Department of Education hires vendors through an RFP process, where multiple companies place bids on one project or job. VersiFit Technologies won the RFP to build the data warehouse and reporting system that we now call ZoomWV. VersiFit Technologies has been providing educational data reporting systems since 1998. For more information on VersiFit Technologies, please visit www.versifit.com.

Is ZoomWV replacing WVEIS?

ZoomWV will NOT be replacing WVEIS. Education data are, and will continue to be, entered into WVEIS at the school level all across West Virginia. Data entered into WVEIS since 2004 will be stored in ZoomWV's data warehouse, and will be used as the source for all of the reports found in ZoomWV.

Where do I go to see the data dashboards?

Follow the link to see the ZoomWV Data Dashboard.

I'm a researcher and need to use West Virginia education data in my research project. Can I get what I need from ZoomWV?

The West Virginia Department of Education encourages researchers use to ZoomWV when looking for West Virginia education data. ZoomWV provides valid, reliable, FERPA-compliant information that doesn't compromise student privacy. To remain FERPA compliant, the public reporting site of ZoomWV contains aggregate data that will answer many research questions. Any researcher needing additional data or further details should review the data request process in the WVDE Data Access & Management Guidance document, and then submit a Data Request Form to the West Virginia Department of Education.

Where can I find the data dictionary?

Each graph and table that is presented in ZoomWV has a dropdown list of options located in the right, top corner of the graph or table. Users who would like more information on the data element contained in a graph or table can click this dropdown list and navigate to the "Comments" option of the dropdown list. This action will open a window that contains definitions and metadata regarding the data element used in the graph or table. (Please see the training resources located on the ZoomWV Data Dashboard Homepage for detailed instructions on how to use this feature.)

Where are the old WVDE data reports going to go?

ZoomWV is an interactive reporting tool that allows users to see the same key data included in all of the 'old' WVDE data reports. The links on WVDE's website with the 'old' data reports will be removed once ZoomWV is completely implemented. However, the 'old' WVDE data reports will remain as separate links on WVDE's site until ZoomWV is completely implemented. This ensures that there is no time were aggregate WVDE data is excluded from public reporting. Once the 'old' WVDE data report links are removed, users will still be able to easily find data of interest. In fact, ZoomWV will offer users more flexibility to download the reports as PDF or excel documents.

I don't like the idea of ZoomWV; where can I voice my concerns?

The Data Governance team at WVDE would be happy to discuss your concerns about ZoomWV. Please contact them by phone at 304-558-7881 or via email at ZoomWV@help.k12.wv.us.

I love ZoomWV! Where can I find out more about it?

The Data Governance team at WVDE would be happy to give you more information about ZoomWV. Please contact them by phone at 304-558-7881 or via email at ZoomWV@help.k12.wv.us.

Where can I learn more about ZoomWV, Data Governance, or FERPA?

Please contact the Data Governance team at WVDE by phone at 304-558-7881 or via email at ZoomWV@help.k12.wv.us.

ZoomWV Technical FAQs

What browsers are supported by ZoomWV?

ZoomWV supports Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari. The most recent version of these browsers are supported by all of the pages in ZoomWV, including the data dashboard. Users with older versions of Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari will still be able to use ZoomWV; however, some features of the dashboard may not work as intended, and the remainder of the site may appear slightly different. It is recommended that users access ZoomWV with Chrome or recent versions of Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Safari.

I see an * asterisk in the legend and data table. What does it mean?

An * asterisk in ZoomWV means that the information has been removed from public display (or redacted) to protect the privacy of West Virginia's students. Redaction is required by federal law to protect the identity of students in small groups.

Why might graphs or tables disappear when I select certain filters?

If a graph or table disappears when you select certain filters, it means one of two things. 1) The information is not in ZoomWV to create the graph or table. 2) The information was removed from the display to protect the privacy of West Virginia's students. In both situations, a graph or table will re-appear when you remove the filter.

How can I tell what the exact number is for an item on a ZoomWV graph?

To see a number for an item on the graph, hover your mouse above the item. A box should appear that identifies the item and provides the exact number for it.

How can I zoom in to see the graph and/or table in a bigger screen?

You can use ZoomWV's Zoom w/Data feature to see a graph and/or table in its own window. The Zoom w/Data feature can be accessed in two ways. 1) Click the title of the graph and/or table you are interested in viewing. 2) Click on the down arrow located on the top right corner of the graph and/or table you are interested in viewing. Then choose "Zoom w/Data" from the menu that appears. (For detailed instructions please visit the full User Guide.)

Can I minimize the filter panel of the dashboard?

Yes, you can minimize the filter panel of the dashboard. Each filter panel has a blue bar located directly above it. That bar contains the title of the page's information, an "Options" dropdown list, and a minimize button. Click the minimize button, located to the right of the "Options" dropdown list, to hide the filter panel. Once the minimize button has been selected, it will change to an expand button. You can click the expand button, located to the right of the "Options" dropdown list, to view the filter panel again.

How do I download a graph and/or table to my computer?

To download a graph and/or table in ZoomWV, click on the down arrow located on the top right corner of the graph and/or table you want to download. Hover over the "Export" option from the menu that appears. You can choose to either export to Excel or PDF. (For detailed instructions please visit the full User Guide.)

How can I print a graph and/or table from the dashboard?

To print a graph and/or table in ZoomWV, click on the down arrow located on the top right corner of the graph and/or table you want to print. Then click "Print" from the menu that appears. (For detailed instructions please visit the full User Guide.)

Why don't menu functions (like zoom, print, export, or comments) available on graphs and tables appear on my screen when I try to use them?

Depending on the security settings in your browser, menu functions such as Zoom w/Data, Print w/Data, Export, and Comments may not appear. These menus open in a new window, which may be blocked if your browser prevents pop-ups from opening. In order for these functions to work, you need to allow pop-ups from ZoomWV. For detailed instructions on allowing pop-ups from ZoomWV, please visit the full User Guide.

ZoomWV Data Security

Will my child's name or personal information be on the ZoomWV site?

No student's name or personal information will be available on the ZoomWV public reporting site. The only information available to the general public will be aggregated — that is, averaged at a group level.

Some information about individual students will be available to teachers and school staff through the secure ZoomWV site. However, only those who have appropriate authorization will be allowed to see that information. For instance, your child's classroom teacher will be able to see your child's name, some demographic details, and information about his/her past and current academic performance. Other teachers who do not have your child in class, however, will not be able to see that information about your child.

Why will teachers and other school staff have access to different information than the general public?

Every day in classrooms across the Mountain State, teachers work hard to individualize instruction based on students' unique needs to ensure that every student has a chance to learn and understand the material. To help teachers focus on each individual student, ZoomWV will provide teachers with information specifically about the students in their classrooms. Giving teachers access to individual student information will help them work more effectively and efficiently to help each and every student achieve.

ZoomWV protects students' privacy by limiting access to students' individual records only to those educators or stakeholders with a legitimate educational interest or need. The general public does not have a legitimate need to see information about individual students. The public will, however, have access to aggregate (or group level) information about various indicators and outcomes. Public reports can be filtered from the state level to the school level.

How will ZoomWV address security and privacy?

ZoomWV implements strict adherence to user-access roles, security requirements, encryption, and privacy rules.

We will strictly adhere to role-access at all times through user credentials — meaning, individuals have credentials that determine their level of access.

A teacher, for example, will be limited to viewing his/her students' data. A principal could access his/her school's student data. A person from the public would only be able to see aggregate state, school or district-level data without any individual student identifiers visible.

What if someone hacks the system or the data leaks out?

WVDE is confident that the security measures surrounding ZoomWV will keep the data secure and deter any potential hackers. To learn more about our security precautions, please visit our Data Privacy page.

We also recognize, however, that there may be incidents where information is disclosed inappropriately or a determined hacker may find a crack in our data shields. If that should happen, WVDE has a privacy incident response and management plan to take immediate action to contain such incidents, prevent them from happening again, and to take all steps necessary to limit and correct any impact on individual students and their families.

If you become aware of a potential breach in student privacy, please help us identify and stop the incident. Visit our Privacy Complaints page to find the resources you need to file a report.

Does ZoomWV allow for sharing of data with third party vendors looking to sell technology to students?

WVDE will NOT share student data with companies interested in data. Educational researchers — even those within WVDE — must go through a research request process. Only if the research is 1) methodologically sound, 2) will advance education in the state with its potential findings, and 3) research WVDE would have done with greater capacity, will WVDE enter into a memorandum of understanding (MOU). This MOU will require the researcher to follow no-data-sharing rules and a timeline that requires destroying the provided data at the conclusion of the study. After the MOU, the approved researcher will be provided with a file(s) that contains de-identified student-level data, meaning individual students cannot be determined because their names are eliminated and their student IDs are scrambled.

Only VersiFit Technology, the vendor that won the RFP to build the data warehouse and reporting system, has access to data within WVEIS. Our contract with VersiFit stipulates that they are not permitted to share any information; they are in contract to build a system as an agent of the WVDE.

Is ZoomWV going to be linked to the SLDS of other states?

There will be no linking of our data warehouse with other states' data warehouses.

Does ZoomWV violate or alter the 1974 Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) to allow 3rd party non-academic access to student records without parental consent?

No, parental consent is still be required for 3rd party non-academic access to be granted for student records.

Does ZoomWV violate the 1974 Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) or state privacy regulations in any way?

ZoomWV does NOT violate FERPA or state privacy regulations in any way. In fact, ZoomWV implements strict adherence to user-access roles, security requirements, encryption, and privacy rules. The security measures surrounding ZoomWV are intended to ensure that it remains compliant with state and federal privacy regulations at all times.

I am concerned that there may have been a privacy breach of West Virginia's education data. Where do I file a complaint?

WVDE is confident that the security measures surrounding ZoomWV will keep the data secure; we recognize, however, that there may be incidents where student information is disclosed inappropriately. If that should happen, WVDE has a privacy incident response and management plan to take immediate action to contain such incidents, prevent them from happening again, and to take all steps necessary to limit and correct any impact on individual students and their families.

If you become aware of a potential breach in student privacy, please help us identify and stop the incident by filing a privacy complaint with the West Virginia Department of Education. Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) complaints can also be filed with the Family Policy Compliance Office at the US Department of Education.

Data Governance and ZoomWV

What is data governance?

Data governance is the processes and systems that govern the quality, collection, management, and protection of data to ensure a single source of the truth.

What is the data governance structure at WVDE?

The WVDE Data Governance Structure, which supports the development and implementation of data governance, is composed of:

  • The Data Policy Committee — WVDE leadership and stakeholders external to WVDE including representatives from WorkForceWV, Birth to Three, Education and the Arts, Higher Education Policy Commission, and the legislature.
  • The Data Governance Committee — WVDE division and office leads as well as county-level representatives.
  • The Data Steward Task Teams — WVDE staff members from each office.

Why is the WVDE Data Governance Structure important to ZoomWV?

Together, the WVDE Data Governance Structure and ZoomWV work to:

  • Ensure data security and privacy of student and educator data
  • Adhere to FERPA, state, WVBE, and WVDE guidelines regarding data privacy and security
  • NOT share student data with non-educational third parties
  • NOT collect information like religious affiliation, family income, etc.
  • NOT be connected or linked to other States' SLDSs

Click here to go to the data dashboard.
Access ZoomWV