Continuous Program Improvement (CPI)

M3®Making Meaning with Multiple Data Sets

M3 logo full

Data can tell you who’s coming to your program, what they are learning, what they like and don't like, and much, much more. But making meaning of this data—using it to create impactful, evidence-driven improvement plans—takes time and focus. Ignite Afterschool has a variety of resources that can help.


Making Data Meaningful

Making Meaning with Multiple Data Sets (M3) guides afterschool and summer learning organizations in collecting and using 2-4 data sets to intentionally design and deliver programming, reflect on successes and challenges, and adjust as needed. It is a continuous program improvement cycle that can and should involve youth workers, program managers, volunteers, young people, parents, and other stakeholders. Looking at different types of findings from a program's monitoring and evaluation efforts, and reflecting on the findings from a variety of perspectives puts the power of data in the hands of the people most impacted by it and able to impact it. A key touchstone in the process is the M3 Huddle, a facilitated workshop bringing program teams together to intentionally make meaning of program data and plan action steps for improvements.

This one-page infographic provides a quick overview of Making Meaning with Multiple Data Sets (M3)

M3 in Minnesota and Beyond

M3 CPI is supported in Minnesota by Ignite Afterschool in partnership with local and regional networks, as well as statewide program partners. Huddles typically take place early in the calendar year, intentionally scheduled to support improvement planning on behalf of current program staff and participants. Some programs choose to do more than one Huddle a year, or to time them differently to better align with their unique program cycle.

To learn more about how to get started with M3 CPI, becoming a certified M3 facilitator within or outside of Minnesota, or participating in a Huddle, please contact Ignite's Strategy Manager for Professional Development and Learning, Keem Anderson at

2023 M3 Open Huddle Location and Dates and Registration

Duluth (hosted in partnership with Duluth Community School Collaborative and UM Extension): January 20

Register Here for Duluth, contact for questions: Jan Derdowski,

St. Paul (hosted in partnership with Sprockets): January 20

Register Here for St. Paul, contact for questions, Jocelyn Wiedow,

Minneapolis (hosted in partnership with the Youth Coordinating Board): February 3

Register Here for Minneapolis, contact for questions: Rachel Oberg-Hauser,

Central Minnesota/St. Cloud area (hosted with United Way—Partner for Student Success): March 1

Register Here for St. Cloud, contact for questions: Clarinda Solberg,

Rochester: March 2

Register Here for Rochester, contact for questions: Brian Faloon,

Ready? Set? M3!

Check out these resources to help your program get started on an M3 CPI cycle

M3 CPI Cycle Planning Guide

This fillable PDF walks you through planning your CPI cycle, including the foundations of the M3, the types of data to collect, and how to plan for a Huddle.

BiBi Self Assessment Guide Book Cover

You can use this fillable PDF to reflect on how your program is using the building blocks of effective afterschool practice as described in Believe It Build It, and identify strengths and areas for improvement.

M3 CPI Single Data Set Reflection Guide

Use this fillable PDF with your team to reflect and plan based on a single data set, whether as preparation for an M3 Huddle or as a micro-cycle within a more robust CPI process.

Intro Videos and More

Not sure if Making Meaning with Multiple Data Sets (M3) is right for you and your youth program? You can view a variety of M3-focused introductory and training workshops here to learn more.

The contents of this publication, film, or conference do not necessarily represent the policy of the federal Department of Education or the state Department of Education and you should not assume endorsement by the federal or state government.

This training is partially funded with a grant from the Minnesota Department of Education using federal funding, CFDA 84.027A, Special Education - Grants to States.