What is an Early Warning System?
An early warning system makes a prediction about a future student outcome based on a student’s current outcomes and characteristics. For example, the Dropout Early Warning System (DEWS) makes a prediction about whether or not a student will drop out of school based on that student’s test scores, attendance, demographics, and other relevant information.
An early warning system provides information to help schools identify students who are not on track for desirable outcomes. An early warning system may also indicate which specific areas are deficient and could be targeted with an intervention. For example, if DEWS indicates that a student is at high risk of dropping out and shows that the student has low attendance then a school can implement a research-based intervention designed to improve the student’s attendance.
Early Warning Systems Provided by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction
The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction provides two early warning systems:
- The Dropout Early Warning System (DEWS) predicts a student’s risk of either dropping out or graduating from high school in more than 4 years. Predictions are provided for students in grades six, seven, eight, and nine.
- The College and Career Readiness Early Warning System (CCREWS) predicts whether or not a student is likely to be ready for college and career, with college and career readiness defined by three measures of ACT performance as well as college enrollment. Predictions are provided for students in grades six, seven, eight, and nine.