Data Quality Lawsuit Filed Against the Department of Education
by Guest Blogger, 2/11/2004
The College Sports Council (CSC) contends a report issued by the Secretary’s Commission on Opportunity in Athletics violates the data quality guidelines, according to a lawsuit filed against the Department of Education. CSC claims that the report is statistically flawed and does not meet the requirement for pre-dissemination review. The lawsuit names Secretary of Education Roderick Paige and the Department of Education’s (ED) Chief Information Office William Leidinger as defendants in the case. CSC filed the suit under the Data Quality Act (DQA) and the Administrative Procedure Act. The group already exhausted all administrative mechanisms to challenge the report under the DQA. CSC maintains that the ED did not conduct a proper review of the third-party data contained the report, which examines sport opportunities for women and men under Title IX. The challenged data is from two General Accounting Office (GAO) reports. The suit accuses the ED disseminated the Commission’s report without first conducting a data quality review of the GAO data, as required by the DQA for all third-party information. In response to this claim during the administrative challenge of the report, the ED claimed that the report used a number of different sources for data, including the GAO reports, and therefore a review of the GAO reports was not necessary. CSC asks that the courts require the ED to correct the report and stop its dissemination. CSC filed a notice of voluntary dismissal Feb. 23, dropping the lawsuit. Apparently, CSC obtained additional information relevant to the charges and intends to file a separate suit so that the court considers this information. See OMB Watch’s analysis for more information on the administrative challenges.