Supporting kids, especially those who have been traditionally marginalized by our education system, through this difficult distance learning era is not easy. Parents are trying to connect with resources that can help their children stay focused on learning. Teachers are doing their best to create exciting virtual classroom experiences and monitor student engagement. And, schools and nonprofit programs are struggling to stay connected to each other and the kids and families they serve in common.
The Challenge - Fragmented Student Information Systems
Most Learning Hubs have students enrolled from several different schools. In fact the Rancho Hub has students enrolled from over a half dozen different schools. Likewise, schools have students attending many different Learning Hubs. This “many to many” network of schools and hubs makes tracking and coordinating vital student communication and data laborious and time consuming. Without a common data system that bridges the school and nonprofit sectors, school and hub administrators have to rely on multiple individual emails, phone calls, and static spreadsheets to stay in touch.
This is where kids start falling through the cracks, disengage, and eventually disappear. This is where teachers contact principals to contact attendance clerks to contact parents to find out why a particular student is having such a hard time turning in his/her google assignments.
The Solution - A Shared Student Engagement Database
This is where Marin Promise Partnership’s collaborative action to lift up the power of shared data is making a big difference. The Partnership’s Backbone Team is providing technical assistance and communication support to help more than 30 different Learning Hub operators serving more than 35 schools that support 100’s of students to efficiently and effectively communicate student needs and successes among the entire network of support. [click HERE to see our interactive Hub Map].
The Backbone Staff has developed a robust, easy-to-use, password protected, online database that is currently helping 15 of these Learning Hub Administrators to capture enrollment and other important student engagement information. Not only does the system track attendance, but it also captures information on student participation levels, student challenges, incidents and bright spots. Reports from the system help Hub staff and managers spot trends and communicate with each other to respond quickly to individual needs.
But that’s not all the Learning Hub Database offers. Schools can now access complete data on their specific student cohort across all Hubs through a user-friendly online report page. This gives counselors and other school personnel real time information to help them stay up-to-date on their students’ Hub engagement. They can track and make sure the students they refer to a Hub have made the connection and are showing up. And, they can see regular engagement updates from the Hub on issues such as English language difficulties, teacher communication, and individual student challenges. Using this information, a teacher can better understand why a student may be having trouble in their class, and a school administrator can cross reference Hub attendance trends with school attendance trends and academic performance. This ability to have student engagement data seamlessly compiled and routed to both Hub and School staff helps to wrap a student in a tight blanket of coordinated support.
Feedback from school counselors and personnel has been overwhelming and positive. Here are a few examples
When schools begin to integrate their attendance and academic performance data into the picture, as part of a holistic Success Network approach, the power of shared data to illuminate root causes and amplify bright spots of success becomes that much more powerful. Click HERE to see the emerging data at the intersection of the Tam Success Network and the Marin City Learning Hubs.