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D2I news for April: changes, charts, and collaborations...

Dear Data to Insight colleagues –


This is the first Data to Insight newsletter addressed to www.datatoinsight.org site members. If you’re receiving it by email, that means you’ll continue to receive news emails and updates from me into the future. I’m now retiring the old mailing list, so if you have any colleagues who haven’t yet signed up at www.datatoinsight.org and want to continue receiving emails from me, please advise them to take appropriate action! I’ll be sending this one message to both lists so all recipients on the old mailing list should be receiving the same advance warning.


As always, if you want to talk about this stuff, or have ideas for how we can do useful things – or how you’d like to get involved – then by all means contact me and let me know what you’re thinking about. In the meantime, this is the news:


  1. Mailing lists

  2. Slack

  3. ChAT and BMt updates

  4. Demand Modelling

  5. Apprenticeships

  6. Python data cleaning / Quality LAC Data

  7. Credits



1. Mailing lists


We’re still working out the best way to keep people informed but not deluged with emails. We set up a “notification preferences” page on the new website, but this is poorly populated thus far, and feels like an extra burden for people to maintain, which is the opposite of the intention. For the time being, we’ll keep sending these summary newsletters, and supplement them with immediate brief notes when a new data tool update is available for download.



2. Slack


If you’d like to keep tabs more frequently on what’s going on with our data tools and projects, consider joining our Slack workspace. You can access by downloading the Slack app or go directly through your web browser if you can’t install the app locally. There are separate channels for each of our key work areas, and plenty of them are quiet, but we’re getting some activity starting to happen in the apprentices channel, and the demand modelling channel. I’m also thinking out loud in some of the channels for data tools I maintain, and happy to use that as a way to draw in user feedback on my plans.


If any of that sounds interesting, join the Slack, and then pick the individual channels that you want to follow. You can also set your user preferences to hide notifications if you just want to log in every now and again to see what’s going on.



3. ChAT and BMt updates


The day after I shared the latest Benchmarking Tool, the DfE published new statistical neighbour lists (actually, they published a calculator tool, but I’ve converted this into static lists for the ChAT and BMt). As such I’m afraid I now have yet another release of the BMt, plus a ChAT which has been updated to match.