Welcome to Laurie Goodman's blog. I use this space to share news and opinions about education and schools in Ridgewood, the state of New Jersey and the nation, in addition to other issues I'm personally interested in. I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, questions or opinions, too, by posting comments on any blog entry. Please observe basic courtesy -- keep your comments focused on issues, no personal attacks or bullying, please. Contact me directly at: lauriegood@mac.com

Saturday, May 1, 2010

RHS "paperless" systems increasing efficiency; gaining interest from other schools

Lest you think Ridgewood is the district that's afraid of technology (more on that soon), I'm happy to share this article that was posted this morning on www.northjersey.com. It's from their monthly Parent Paper magazine, and it tells about some of the "paperless" systems being used at Ridgewood High School and other schools to save time and money and improve communications.

An excerpt from the article:

Heading into the second decade of the 21st century, a growing number of school districts are making smart choices in terms of the three "E’s," economy, ecology and efficiency. By using today’s available technologies, they are saving taxpayer dollars, the planet and time by leaving a lot of the paperwork behind.

Making the transition to a paperless or near-paperless system, however, involves a great deal of planning. In the Ridgewood School District, which plans to become virtually paperless in September, there are three different programs in use. Laura Moore, guidance counselor and Naviance Site manager at Ridgewood High School, was on the committee that chose their new student information system, Skyward. "Through Skyward, teachers can keep their grades online," she explains. "We will use this site to both post information and communicate with students and parents. This is what we call a ‘push-and-pull site, as we will be communicating back and forth with students and parents. All report cards will be posted electronically on this site, along with mid-quarter progress for each student." In addition, Moore says all of the district’s health, attendance, disciplinary and guidance records and all course scheduling will be kept through Skyward. It is also used as a financial tool. "There’s an application with Skyward for making payments for school lunches, PSATs, and AP exams," adds Moore.

The new system creates a level of efficiency that, in addition to being cost-effective, is also time-efficient. John Lorenz, Ridgewood High School principal notes, "Teachers, parents and students are all very excited about communicating this way because it avoids the time lag. This will be pretty much an overnight turnaround."

Read the full story by clicking here.

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