The National Center for Educational Achievement (NCEA) began as Just for the Kids in 1996, in Austin, Texas. A non-profit organization, the group later changed its name when it became a joint partnership with The University of Texas at Austin and the Education Commission of the States (ECS). In 2007, NCEA was acquired by ACT, Inc., operating as a separate department until late 2011 when work began to integrate the organization into ACT.
2013 Marks Transition to ACT
As of this year, we will have completed the transition of NCEA to ACT. Consequently, the NCEA name will no longer be used, except on the “NCEA Higher Performing Schools List” published annually for its data partnership states (Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Kentucky, and Texas). In addition to the NCEA Higher Performing Schools List, partnership states are provided with College and Career Readiness Targets and Charts developed by former NCEA staff (now ACT team members). The participating state departments of education provide student assessment and demographic data for this research. Team members will also continue to provide research-based solutions and expertise in higher performing schools, school improvement, and best practice research that lead to increased levels of college and career readiness.
Over the next few months, content from the NCEA/ACT website will gradually be assimilated into the ACT website. Users will find themselves redirected to act.org, but we are striving for seamless execution as we integrate our content with ACT. We will continue in our mission of helping people achieve education and workplace success, and providing insights that help unlock potential throughout the Kindergarten through Career continuum.
NCEA was also a founding and managing partner of the Data Quality Campaign (DQC). The campaign is a national, collaborative effort to encourage and support state policymakers to improve the availability and use of high-quality education data to improve student achievement. DQC provides tools and resources that help states implement and use longitudinal data systems, while providing a national forum for reducing duplication of effort and promoting greater coordination and consensus among the organizations focused on improving data quality, access and use.