There is a saying in regards to educational organizations, “Schools are DATA rich and information poor.” I am unsure who to credit. The words are not mine. We are planning on improving access to information in the district this year.
The district will be upgrading the student management system database. Our present software is outdated and will no longer be supported after this year. We received presentations from five major vendors last spring and selected a software product from Aspen called X2 (http://www.x2dev.com/).
One factor in our selection of this student management software is that it is in use in Bedford and Lexington. We are planning on working together through the LABBB Collaborative to provide professional development across all of the districts in LABBB who are adopting X2. By collaborating, we can save money and provide high quality professional development.
In addition, LABBB is in the process of hiring a DATA manager who will work with all five districts so that student DATA can be pulled from the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (DESE) DATA Warehouse and included on a student’s desktop profile at the district.
The DATA Warehouse allows districts to sort through the DATA from many different district reports (MCAS, EPIMS, EIMS) to create and link DATA that may help provide vital information to assist us in our planning.
Among other features, the new student management software will create the opportunity for:
- on-line course registration
- a more automated master schedule
- a common, digital report card
- parent access to student records – grades, discipline, lunch balance – through the internet.
We look forward to providing more information to faculty, staff, and parents as well as an implementation time-line as we move ahead with the X2 Database.