Improving Daily Flow With Student Tracking Software
published on August 22, 2013 by Sonia Mastros
Students going to school represent a very different problem to school districts than employees do to employers. As minors, the moment the student enters the school bus, the school district accepts responsibility for their safety and well being.
During the school day, the students must be transported, educated and fed. Knowing who is coming to school is much more important to a school than a late message by an employee calling in sick. A missed child represents a host of lawsuits to say nothing of the danger to the child in case of an abduction.
Luckily today’s advances in Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping allow multiple uses so that the student tracking software tracks the buses while keeping tabs on everything in real-time.
We Need Those ‘Stinking Badges!’
In the past, school administrators would not know how many students were actually in school till first period class attendance could be gathered up. This was an incredible lag time which meant services like how many mouths to feed in the cafeteria didn't have much time, if any, to adjust how much they were cooking. It also meant there was an even greater lag time from when the child left their home before being reported as possibly missing. All of this can be changed with a simple badge swipe keyed to the student tracking software.
Not only do GPS tracking units allow transportation managers to know where their buses are in real-time, badge readers allow the same real-time information to be sent to the school district about who is on a bus. The moment a bus leaves its last pick-up, the student tally can be run against the list of the students who should be on the bus. This allows for:
Quick, proactive calls to parents to confirm where the child is.
Allows faster response to truancy.
Gives a total student count before the buses arrive to unload.
Tracks students changing bus stop locations.
Alerts staff when students are getting on the wrong bus or at the wrong stop.
All of this information can be used to more accurately plan for meals. This becomes even more important in inclement weather as many parents will keep children home even if there is not an official school closure.
Multiple Badge Use
As while student tracking software is also used to say track drivers, the badges themselves can be used in a myriad of ways. Students can swipe their ID badge when eating in the cafeteria so a monthly bill can be sent to the parents instead of the child having to carry lunch money. Badges can also be used to ID students coming on and off campus during breaks or lunch time. It could even double as a computer access or library card.
For schools with more security issues, badges can be used by students to gain access to buildings in the same way employees do in higher security buildings. Potential troublesome students on suspension or expelled would disable/lose their cards and thus be unable to enter the school. Taking attendance can now be done by simply having the students swipe/scan their cards as they enter the class. No more wasting class time on calling out names!
Unified Software Saves Money
School districts are having to do more with less and this sort of student tracking system allows schools to solve multiple problems with one system. This means savings by getting rid of redundant systems as well as training on one system instead of learning student tracking software on top of dispatch/bus scheduling software.
Schools are starting to realize the power of being able to accurately plan the day early as well as being much more situationally aware of where their students are. When faced with the danger of children being abducted by disgruntled parents or the need to quickly tally where everyone is after a disaster or school shooting, it is in everyone’s interest, especially the parents, that the school be able to quickly track where all the students are.