No honor rolls yet in Greencastle-Antrim? New student data system delays recognition of honor students

By PAT FRIDGEN, Echo Pilot

Hundreds of students at Greencastle-Antrim middle and high schools made the honor roll for the first marking period, but they have no confirmation of that accomplishment. While their report cards gave letter grades for each class, the grade point average and class rank were not calculated.

It was due to computer software. The district purchased PowerSchool through the Keystones to Opportunity grant, but understanding the intricacies of the student management system was harder than expected.

"We purchased it earlier than we planned to, because we had the money," said superintendent Dr. C. Gregory Hoover. "The transition wasn't as smooth as we hoped it would be. It's a great piece of software, but the learning curve was steeper than we thought."

The system was designed to house student records. It replaces Edline as a way for parents to check on classroom progress. Other features include on-line report cards, apps for iPhones, and storage of student data. G-ASD wants to streamline communication between students, parents and staff, and has a section on its webpage for people to set up accounts.

The creator of the web-based student information system, Pearson School Systems in Rancho Cordova, Calif., promotes its capabilities to track attendance, discipline, enrollment, assessments, scheduling, transcripts, reporting, and a host of other services. It claims support of 10 million students in 50 states and 65 countries.

The look of the paper report cards changed also, and is still evolving, said Hoover. The second marking period just ended and staff at the secondary schools hope to release those honor rolls.

PowerSchool applies to all students in grades K-12.

"Every day it's a little better to use," Hoover said. "We're behind schedule but it will all be corrected soon."