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Teachers Tackle Technology

By Ivie Li

As a new school year kicks off, a new form of student information system emerges: Infinite Campus. Replacing eSchoolData, Infinite Campus provides real time access to student schedules, grades, contact information, online payments, communications and more. There are various opinions on this switch, particularly with the teachers.

Q: What parts of Infinite Campus do you feel are better or worse than eSchoolData?

Ms. Mary Gelber: I am not thrilled with Infinite Campus mainly because of the lack of organization on the screen and the abbreviations that the program creates for assignments. What I do like is that the email links to parental contacts actually work which is an improvement over eSchoolData. I am also puzzled as to why student information is not yet on Infinite Campus.

Mr. John Ferrara: At this point, I am still navigating through Infinite Campus, so it is still a little overwhelming and unfamiliar to me. I like the option of syncing grades from Google Classroom, but there are so many functions to this system that it is difficult to know if this is better than eSchoolData.

Q: Do you think it is better that Infinite Campus notifies parents about students’ grades?

MG: As a teacher for 30+ years and a mother of three, I have come to detest the ability of parents to instantly find out grades. Senior high students need to learn the responsibility of seeing their grades and then either be proud of the grade or study harder for the next test. It upsets me to no end that when I post grades, parents often see the grade before the student and then text the student reprimanding them. Everyone messes up once in a while. Consistent failure will always result in a teacher reaching out to a parent anyway.

JF: I think until students are 18 years of age, their grades should be public for their parents to see and to know. Students at the high school level do not always inform their parents about their grades. This system is necessary for the parents to keep track of their child’s progress and to be able to make adjustments before the end of the marking period.

Q: What tips would you share to other teachers in navigating Infinite Campus?

JF: Be patient and take your time. All new programs, platforms and applications take time to learn and to become familiar with.

Source by Anna Detke

Mr. Novak figures out attendance with the new Infinite Campus platform.

The school’s process of switching from paper report cards to eSchoolData to Infinite Campus is not surprising, since schools across the country are doing the same. Some say that using this online system can bring parents closer to their child’s education and help them understand their academic progress. Coaches can also use this system to easily find students’ grades and decide on their eligibility to be part of a team. Of course, going paperless also takes away the need for killing thousands of trees.

On the other hand, this could pose problems for families who do not use or have access to the internet, making paper results a valuable part of being able to connect with schools.

In the age of information, it will take time for everyone to understand the changes and effects of instant information.

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