2M Student System Approved

Matt Pommer:

The $2 million for the student information system will be spread out over six budget years. Assistant Superintendent for Business Roger Price and planning and research director Kurt Kiefer said the system will pay for itself through efficiency and reduced staffing needs.
Parents would begin to see the impact of the new online system in the 2006-2007 school year, Kiefer said. He warned that training and implementation of the new computer software would take time and be “painful” for a period. The system is similar to one already being used in the Middleton-Cross Plains school district.
When it is fully operational, parents will be able to use a computer to see their child’s grades, progress reports, attendance and behavior reports. Students will be able to examine course schedules and register over the new system. Class attendance reporting will be fully computerized with the system.
Board member Ruth Robarts questioned how much parents would be able to use the system to communicate with teachers or to see course assignments. Rainwater said there are labor union contract issues related to what teachers could be required to do in those areas.

Ruth identified a critical issue in the successfull implementation of such a system.

4 thoughts on “2M Student System Approved”

  1. I was one of the parents on the evaluation committee and I was told that this is a ‘cost neutral’ proposal. Basically, it’s being paid for by eliminating positions through attrition – one currently reporting to Roger Price and a couple in Kurt Kiefer’s unit. Kurt said they wouldn’t be able to do it any other way because there isn’t any additional money — they had to find a way to do it within the current budget.

  2. I came in late to Kurt’s presentation, so may be off in my thinking but…
    I think that the trick will be to keep expectations realistic during the early implementation stages. When we had our first meeting for East High United, the impossibility of getting basic information on grades, attendance, etc. from the schools came up as a real source of frustration. Particularly since many of us cannot reach teachers, and often administrators, during or after school hours. These concerns have not lessened over the past year, for reasons related to staffing levels in our schools among other concerns.
    The ability to check in to a web site, which is open and available 24 hours, will be a welcome change for many of us. And, as parents, students and teachers begin to use the system, I would suspect that the sophistication of the information provided will grow, too. At least that has been the pattern that I’ve seen in my professional life.
    I realize that access to the internet can be a challenge, and I hope that the implementation will involve some information and training sessions in libraries and community centers so that families and staff at these institutions will be familiar with how to use the system. (These are places where open computer access is available without a fee.)
    And, if we can take care of the information needs of even half the population via the internet, one might hope that this would free in-school staff to work more closely with people for whom internet access is a challenge.
    Again, I’m desperate so I’m willing to try anything. If I can get better information on half of the classes without bugging teachers, I will be one happy camper. Just my 2.45 cents.

  3. Kurt and his group have done a wonderful job reseaching this system. It will be a welcome addition.

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