Dr. Kristen Lewald Recipient of User Feedback Award
In September 2022 SAS in Cary, NC announced seven inaugural Customer Recognition Awards at the international SAS Explore Conference. Kristen Lewald, Ed.D., IU13 Statewide Projects Director (Executive Director’s Office), was awarded the User Feedback Award. SAS is the provider of the Pennsylvania Value-Added Assessment System, (PVAAS), one of the tools in the cadre of tools provided to public LEAs/districts from the Pennsylvania Department of Education. LEAs/districts and schools use PVAAS growth and student projection data, in conjunction with achievement data, to make sure students are on the path to proficiency and beyond. SAS is one of the largest privately held software companies in the world, and provides innovative analytics that empowers customers in nearly 150 countries around the world to transform data into intelligence.
Dr. Lewald’s insights into user needs regarding the PVAAS system for districts and schools helped land her this award. She aided in incorporating roster verification and the Pennsylvania Educator Effectiveness Rating System (PEERS) into the PVAAS web application that is hosted by SAS. Likewise, to fill the gap in education during the 2020-2021 school year due to Covid, Dr. Lewald helped to develop and implement a plan to use local assessments already in districts so that SAS could measure growth and provide reporting within the PVAAS web application. Despite the numerous challenges faced by educators this year, in the first year of implementation, approximately 100 districts in the state submitted their local assessment data, and the state submitted additional local assessment data on behalf of 300 districts. Dr. Lewald has been instrumental in reviewing the SAS local assessment reports to ensure that they are accessible to the intended audience.
SAS also notes that, “Her feedback and attention to detail have improved our quality of work and its usefulness to educators and administrators in Pennsylvania during this challenging time.”
Many congratulations on your incredible achievements, Dr. Lewald!