Student Information Systems

California District Upgrades SIS, Online Registration

The Torrance Unified School District will replace its current student information system (SIS) with a new SIS and an online registration system.

The Torrance district selected PowerSchool's SIS, a web-based system designed for K-12 schools with a range of district and school-level tools for administrators, a gradebook (PowerTeacher Pro) and other tools for teachers, along with real-time access to grades, attendance and assignments for parents and students through a web portal or mobile app.

District representatives said they believe it will streamline processes for the 24,400-student district. It will give parents access to information that they have not had in the past so they can monitor their children's proficiency on standards and receive real-time alerts that are specific to their families.

"We have an antiquated student information system in place that isn't easily accessible by everyone at the district," said Torrance USD Chief Educational Technology and Information Services Officer Gil Mara. "PowerSchool is completely web-based and device-agnostic, making it easy to deploy for an entire school community."

PowerSchool Registration will replace a packet of 20 to 30 pages that families had to fill out at the beginning of each school year, as well as eliminating the massive amount of data entry school staff members had to then input. The electronic format will allow families with more than one child to avoid inputting information more than once with a "snap" function.

"Parents were wondering why they had to fill out the same information over and over again," said Mara. "It's not efficient and we use too much paper on a yearly basis to complete this process."

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.

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