Selecting Online School Management Software

School management software has improved in recent years, and schools can now find new solutions that provide greater value than ever before. Many schools still use dated, client-server school management software or even pencil and paper. Open-source technologies and hosted cloud-computing platforms let schools take advantage of modern functionality at a surprisingly reasonable cost.

Businesses have been moving toward Software as a Service (SaaS) products for years, and schools are following suit. Well-chosen school management software makes a school more efficient and saves valuable administrative time. Software can help efficiently collect and organize attendance, grades, lessons, and results. Improvements in communication can lead to a better educational experience for students.

Choosing the best school software requires consideration of many factors. When researching, it’s important to ask the following questions.

Required features:

Does the product print report cards and transcript?

Can it import previous transcript data?

Can it handle standards-based grading?

Does it allow customized grading scales?

Can it have multiple custom grading scales in one school?

Does it have a teacher gradebook?

Does it provide parent and student access?

Can parents and students download homework online?

Does it handle custom fields?

Does the report card allow a logo?

Ease of use:

Is the interface laid out logically?

How hard is it to create a class, enroll students, and set up a grading scale?

Do teachers need to install any proprietary plug-ins?

Does it require installation of client software?

Is it complicated to go from one class to another?

Does it have video help?

Modules:

Are the functional modules integrated together

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Does each module need to be set up separately?

What are additional costs for the various modules?

Hardware and software requirements:

Does the school need to buy hardware or is the solution hosted?

Does the school need to buy a software license for SQL or other proprietary database?

Does the school need Java installed on each computer?

Does the software also operate on MAC, iPad, and IPhone?

Hidden costs:

Is a trial version available?

What are yearly maintenance fees?

Is there a setup fee?

Is there a cancellation fee?

Your data:

Can the school export data?

Are the reports available and files?

These are just some of the many important considerations when searching for the best software for a school. Ultimately, it’s crucial to find a solution that teachers, students, and parents can embrace. Software that solves a school’s core needs and is supported by the community will be the obvious winner.