Academic journal article T H E Journal (Technological Horizons In Education)

Scanner Streamlines Scheduling & More

Academic journal article T H E Journal (Technological Horizons In Education)

Scanner Streamlines Scheduling & More

Article excerpt

"We have a very sophisticated network," explains Leo Stanford, the director of data processing at Calcasieu Parish School District. The district encompasses 57 schools, each containing an HP QS16SX microcomputer connected via a wide area network to one another and to district offices in Lake Charles, La.

Carter Pertaine software was purchased to handle administrative tasks at each school site as well as at the district's central offices. The distributor who sold them the program reccommended integrating HEI/360 optical mark readers from Scanning Systems in Victoria, Minn., to further streamline tasks such as attendance, grade reporting and scheduling.

Beginning in January of 1990, Stanford says the district purchased four of the OMR scanners. In a mere 18 months every school and the main office were making use of the machines--58 units in all.

Master Absentee List

Stanford was quite impressed with the scanners' functionality, specifically at the middle and high school levels. Using the readers for attendance gathering has freed teachers to spend more time on instructional tasks and lets administrators focus on instructional management. "It is almost impossible to do period-by-period attendance for 100 classes manually and get that information to the central office," he explains.

Now teachers fill out scanner forms to indicate absences. Those forms are scanned in the administrator's office and an absentee list for the entire school generated. This list is then handed back to all teachers in time for the next period. The result--administrators and educators know if a student has just cut class or been gone all day. Also, absence statistics are much more accurate.

HEI/360s are also used for end-of-term grade reporting. Teachers "bubble in" grades, which are then scanned into the system. …

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