K-12 school districts in North America are starting to notice the benefits of leveraging a digital student management system — also known as a student information system (SIS), student record system (SRS), or student information management system (SIMS).
Not only does this software arm a district with the capacity to better organize and manage student data, an SIS platform also improves the overall student experience. Unfortunately, many schools have yet to adopt the technology, hobbled as they are by inefficient manual processes. It’s past time these schools moved forward.
The era of digitization is here. In 2017, $8.15 billion was invested in ed-tech companies globally. More recently, the EdTech start-up market was predicted at close to $252 billion.
Technology is an inextricable part of our school systems, and everyone from the classroom to the district level needs to adapt. Adopting a digital student information system is the next critical step forward to navigating the entire student lifecycle.
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A student management system stores and tracks students’ workload, personal information, grades, record, and more. It’s a means of streamlining the work and tracking all the data generated by a student, consolidating everything into one system rather than multiple records. A student information system can also be used to monitor performance at the district level.
Many schools already use electronic student records to at least some extent. However, the data contained within these records is relatively limited in scope, typically including only grades and faculty notes accessible exclusively to parents and students. Other information about the student may be fragmented across multiple educators and departments.
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At its most basic, student management system is all about information. It simplifies information tracking and improves communication by making data easily accessible to all stakeholders in a student’s educational journey. It also streamlines back-office processes by gathering and orchestrating data collection that includes:
In addition to managing the above, student management systems may also include key features and administrative processes such as:
It’s important to note that a student management system is distinct from a school management system. The latter includes information about not only students, but also faculty and administrative staff. School management systems represent a functional intersection between SIS and HRP.
There’s no denying the many benefits available when it comes to managing student data through a powerful SIS.
But what do student management systems really unlock? Here are just a few of the biggest benefits.
Deploying the right student management system means spending less time maintaining records and more time focused on the school. Improved data accuracy and organization only further enhance productivity and efficiency. Because all data is stored in a central location, this can also improve communication and coordination.
Student management software empowers teachers to not only keep track of each student’s progress, but also take immediate action to course-correct or provide assistance as needed. Instead of dealing with administrative busywork, educators can focus on teaching.
Modern student management systems allow students and parents to easily connect with their teachers in an environment where all essential data is accessible upfront. This allows a student’s parents to take a more active role in their education, while also empowering the student to more easily ask questions or seek help. All this is achieved at a reduced cost as well, as the school is no longer required to call, message, or send out paper documents.
A student management system makes it possible for parents to gain total visibility into their children’s school activities, assignments, attendance, and performance . It also means a smoother transition between classes and grades, as all teachers have access to a single source of truth about their students performance.
Traditionally, school administrators manage timetables and schedules. However, dedicated school administration software provided through a student management platform allows much of this process to be automated. This results in better time management and timetable management.
School activity goes beyond the wall of the classroom. It also includes extracurriculars such as sports and clubs, in addition to details about a student’s home life. With a student management system, this information is all kept in one place, making it far simpler for teachers to keep track of their students and identify when one is struggling.
The cost incurred from manually managing students and school activities is often staggering from not only a budgetary standpoint, but also in terms of time. With a student management system, teachers can spend less time holding up the foundation of the student experience, and more time in the classroom.
Between physical files, records, and forms, a single school may go through an immense amount of paper. Implementing cloud-based student management software allows a school to digitize the majority of this documentation. Not only does this create a digital audit trail, it also greatly reduces the amount of paper a school requires, making the school more sustainable in the process.
To the right people, student management software is accessible from anywhere and at any time. All a stakeholder requires is a smartphone, tablet, or PC to immediately look up relevant student information. In the long-term, this facilitates better information sharing between both educators and schools. A record of everything can be kept due to its easy accessibility.
Because a student management system gives everyone involved in a student’s education access to a well-organized collection of data about the student, it’s far easier to keep everyone accountable and on-task. Parents can keep better track of a student’s academic data and development, while students can be granted more ownership over their educational journey through a self-service dashboard.
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Typically, K-12 schools have the best outcomes where student management systems are concerned. With that said, any educational institution, school admin department and administration staff dedicated to learning can benefit from the software, including:
The possibilities are endless with SIS and they continue to grow as the software improves.
What’s important is that the SIS program enhances communication and doesn’t cause confusion. The point of an SIS is to increase efficiency. If you can answer honestly that an SIS will help your student’s future, then it’s time to digitize.
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Remain diligent when shopping for a student management solution. Although many providers have a general background in education, not all of them will be a good fit for your institution and its needs. It’s important that you know what questions to ask a prospective vendor, and also that you understand the most important pillars of student management software — first, the data that every student information management platform should collect:
There are also a few characteristics of the software itself that are non-negotiable:
If a prospective vendor doesn’t offer all of the services detailed above, you may find yourself overcharged for a solution that under-delivers.
We live in an era of hybrid learning and digital transformation. Choosing the right student management system has never been more important. You need a platform designed for your district’s unique needs, developed by a vendor that understands the challenges of K-12 education.
That’s where we come in. With Edsembli | SIS, schools and staff are afforded many benefits. Additional benefits and features include:
Contact an Edsembli specialist today and book a demo to uncover how Edsembli | SIS can streamline school and student management and empower your staff, students, and administrators.
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