ABSTRACTDOROTHY ANN HAYES. Exploring the use of data in the school improvement planning process to increase student achievement (Under the direction of DR. DAVID M. DUNAWAY).State mandates require data-driven decision-making in each step of the school improvement planning process. Evaluation of the improvement efforts is measured by student performance on annual standardized tests. The recent expansion of a statewide data system provides access to real time data by principals, teachers, parents, and students. This case study explores the use of data by principals and teachers in the school improvement planning process to increase student achievement. This study examines principal and teacher perceptions of data use, data use practices and influences on data use practices. Findings from the study indicate a strong influence of district expectations and school principals on teacher’s perceptions of the school improvement planning process. While access to a variety of data supports improvement efforts, the expectations for principals and teachers to collect and analyze data throughout the school year is promoting a climate of hyper-accountability.