By Wiley, Wayne C.
Technology & Learning , Vol. 24, No. 11
Managing district information, web sites, and data security as well as supplying information on-demand are just a few of the tasks causing educational administrators to seek new solutions these days. The answer is to streamline the business of running schools by putting all your information in one place so you have access to coordinated data and files. Then it's simple to organize and view related information, create reports, share documents safely with others over a network or the Web, and make data available to people on the go.
Understanding and reporting student and staff information and all other administrative data requires organizational and analytical skills. The right tool, an easy to use relational database like FileMaker Pro, helps administrators to structure and simplify the tasks. You can organize and access all your information (including all your Microsoft Word and Excel documents, PDF files, forms, records, images, and more) and design layouts that display exactly what you need.
To manage your information better, you can use FileMaker Pro to set up a complete data management solution that allows you to link your data together simply and easily. You can track, file, search, share, and secure data for all types of information including student test scores, health records, contact information, behavior, and other information independently of correlated, depending on needs, with FileMaker Pro, it is easy to automate common tasks like creating parent-mailing labels by class, tracking grades and test scores, or running reports of student improvement by teacher, by subject, or disaggregated by groups to meet NCLB requirements.
Communication and Collaboration Online
Getting information out quickly and accurately--to staff, the district office, and the community--relies on having an efficient system in place that allows access to the information over a network or via the Web. The best system is a single tool that houses, organizes, and publishes the data seamlessly. FileMaker's instant web publishing capabilities allow you to post databases to the web so that your staff can search, display, and add information using a web browser. You can publish, share, and collect data over the web quickly and easily by simply using FileMaker's Instant Web Publishing tool (with no HTML programming required).
Security and Privacy
Information must be protected and secure. The only way that an administrator can share data is by setting levels to guarantee that access is granted only to those who need to know. FileMaker's security system protects your data from desktop to network to Web. You define accounts with passwords and assign custom privileges for each user, specifying what they can view and edit, down to the field level, and it remains protected as it's shared across the network. You ensure the system's integrity and protect the privacy of your data by determining who sees what. For example, parents can see only their child's records, and teachers can review only their students' scores.
Management on the Go
Few administrators can afford to be desk-bound, but needing access to data doesn't stop at the office door. with its ability to transfer information to your handheld, powerful editing and updating features, and two-way synchronization, FileMaker Mobile gives you access when you are out in the field. Since getting information can't wait until it's convenient, the solution is to store information on your handheld to view, modify, find, sort, add, and delete data on-demand. At the end of the day, you can update the district data by synchronizing FileMaker Mobile files with your desktop FileMaker Pro. …