Today, we’re thrilled to share that the Ed-Fi Data Standard v2.1 has officially been released on Tech Docs. This is a huge milestone for the Ed-Fi Community.

This release is a direct result of deep community engagement. The expertise of core vendors and consultants, and of the wider technical community over a period of many months were needed to shape this release. You might remember that in January, we opened a Request for Comment period to gather valuable community input to help shape the direction and advancement of the data standard, and followed that with a second Request for Comment. Community members were able to share feedback through the Ed-Fi Tracker, where all proposed changes and feedback on those changes is compiled and available to view. We also hosted our first-ever Technical Congress, which provided an opportunity for our technical community members to come together and dive deeply into Ed-Fi technology, which included reviewing upcoming changes with the data standard and providing feedback before the changes were finalized.

The resulting Data Standard 2.1 is evolutionary and strikes a balance between change and continuity. From stakeholders and experts (particularly at the Technical Congress), we heard the importance of preserving existing data exchanges at work today. But the community also pointed out areas where evolving education practice and new use cases demanded new entities and modifications to existing entities. As a result, there are a few cases in Data Standard v2.1 where ”breaking” changes were made, but these are very small in number and generally were only made when it was judged that not addressing a problem or new use case would lead to even more divergence in the Ed-Fi-based data exchange.

Of perhaps smaller interest, but certainly not of smaller importance: this is also the first release of the data standard where the technical artifacts (and a significant portion of the documentation) have been managed by MetaEd, a tool that supports implementers who are extending Ed-Fi technology. Our appreciation goes out to the MetaEd development team, the beta testers and others from the community who have helped shape the tool.

We encourage you to dig through the information on Tech Docs to learn more about this evolutionary release, but in the meantime, here are some highlights:

  • fresh, simpler organization anchored on the Unifying Data Model (UDM) that reflects our move away from Bulk and toward API/JSON as the primary method of interacting with concrete implementations of the data model
  • An informative and detailed What’s New
  • A full rationale basis for the UDM anchored by MetaEd, including:

A special thanks to our dedicated community members and partners who helped make the success of this release possible through their willingness to collaborate to advance the future of the Ed-Fi data standard!