Using business models to streamline the educational ecosystem
Using business models to streamline the educational ecosystem
Businesses around the world use technology to streamline processes in every department. From human resources to project management, they understand that when employees aren’t required to spend time on administrative tasks, they can focus and become more effective in their jobs. In addition, by implementing key technologies, businesses save money, save time, improve communications, and identify ways to improve overall efficiencies.
The education industry is not inherently different from the business world. All educational institutions – including private, public, and for-profit institutions, face an array of administrative challenges including:
- Capturing and keeping student information up to date
- Creating a process for capturing, sharing and archiving grades
- Developing and managing content and curriculum that meets standards
- Implementing learning management systems that effectively deliver and store important and sensitive school data
- Designing a communication system appropriate for all constituents including students, parents, teachers, and school administrators
Schools need to be able to track student information, grades, and progress. They need to be able to communicate with parents and each other – a vital component of student success. In addition, schools need curriculum that meets standards, and they need teachers capable of distributing that curriculum efficiently. To operate effectively, schools must be able to report on each individual student, manage HR, and most importantly, ensure teaching and learning is always happening.
Unfortunately, the sheer man hours and resources allocated to managing all these moving parts can be time consuming and costly. While most educational institutions have systems in place to take care of their administrative needs, these systems tend to be pieced together and require large amounts of time and effort to organize and collate all the necessary information.
Using business strategies in education
Some schools have found that the best way to build an efficient infrastructure is to take a page straight from the business world playbook. Like businesses, these schools are looking for integrated technology systems to restructure their systems.
One example of this strategy in action can be found in DiME, Desarrollo en Métodos de Enseñanza S.C., a Flex Academy in Jalisco Mexico. DiME used several disparate systems for school management, grading, curriculum management, student and teacher information and more. This mix of systems required educators and administrators to spend extra time collecting and organizing information for all day-to-day tasks as well as end of term reporting, student promotion, and school master scheduling.
Some challenges DiME faced included:
- Their content providers and the delivery systems for that content (LMS / CMS / SIS) did not communicate well with each other or any of their other management tools
- They did not have an efficient way to manage student information
- Their current technology had a complicated enrollment process
- They were unable to manage parent and student communication via their own portal
- The academy needed to use various systems to support their academic program such as pen to paper management of grade book, and a separate system to manage and deliver important notifications
- Expensive and time-consuming professional development across various departments was needed to navigate the separate systems
The solution – streamlining the educational ecosystem
To alleviate these inefficiencies, DiME implemented the ASSIST Educational Ecosystem to integrate all administrative and curricular processes. Through ASSIST, the academy was able to create a single system with hierarchical credentialing that allows relevant data to be viewed by the appropriate people.
Furthermore, with the ASSIST integrated system, the DiME was able to provide an Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) for each student. This ILP allowed students and parents to see the complete roadmap to graduation and gave them the ability to immediately address any problems that might hinder their success.
Finally, DiME took advantage of ASSIST’s embedded K-12 school which is fully accredited for grades K-12. The online content allowed the academy to add multiple new educational opportunities to their curriculum including Business Certificates, US High School Dual Diplomas, and US College Preparatory Diplomas.
By implementing the ASSIST Ecosystem, DiME has streamlined their procedures, allowing them to pursue their aggressive growth goals, including the expansion of four additional academies throughout the region. In fact, once the academy had the ASSIST ecosystem up and running, they were able to save enough time and money to expand their student population by 35% almost immediately.
Michael Spencer, CEO says “The ASSIST platform has been configured in an extraordinarily efficient manner at this school. They are using it to drive a “block study” program that, utilizes multiple tracks with multiple sessions of instruction that support student needs down to the individual level.
This optimized use of the ASSIST environment has also allowed for additional educational tracks to support deeper learning with the incorporation of local, offline content that supports project-based learning in areas of student interest.”
Additional benefits of streamlining educational systems
The connection of administrative, communication and curriculum systems had many benefits for the DiME. The connection created a one-stop-shop that allowed for interoperability and flexibility. The academy experienced improved information accessibility and consistency, and empowered faculty, staff and students with new tools and capabilities to achieve success.
- Leveraging technology by integrating the curriculum, platform, instruction and professional development online provided efficient operations in multiple forms of blended learning at the school. This resulted in building healthy profit margins allowing DiME to continue managing, operating and building their educational offerings.
- The cost savings achieved by improving efficiencies, combined with a more robust net income, allowed the academy to develop and implement more aggressive building expansion plans.
- Typical front office work and management that took additional personnel and time to manage, is completed automatically and efficiently with the ASSIST technology allowing staff to concentrate on improving student and school performance.
- The ASSIST Ecosystem provided an opportunity for DiME to implement efficiently and economically several blended learning models that accommodated their infrastructures and deliver education programs catered specifically to the local market needs.
- Providing easy access to a content and learning management system provided DiME teachers with all the necessary online tools for success and empowered them develop a flexible and engaging teaching environment.
The success DiME experienced is just one example of the way schools can streamline their processes to achieve student and educational success. This particular academy, while for-profit, uses the ASSIST Ecosystem to develop efficiencies that save money – allowing them to serve the needs of underprivileged students around the region.
According to Roberto Mostajo, Academic Coordinator of Dime “The ASSIST Ecosystem blended/flex model of delivery supports our expansion in student enrollments without increased expenses. The flexible model for scheduling students while using ASSISTS Ecosystem permits the use of classroom space to its fullest, i.e. more students can be scheduled throughout the day, utilizing the facility to its fullest. The increased teacher to student ratio makes this flex school model very cost effective, while still providing more one on one time with each student than in the traditional classroom setting.”
Every school, whether public or private, should consider utilizing business franchise best-practices, starting with integrating their systems. By streamlining administrative and educational processes, schools can reduce costs, improve workflow, and allocate more time and effort to increasing student success.
For more information about how you can take advantage of the ASSIST Ecosystem to improve efficiencies and increase student achievement, contact: sales@ASSISTeducation.com or call +1 866-984-3384
About ASSIST Education
ASSIST Education, has developed a cloud-based, educational ecosystem. Founded by a team of experienced education professionals, this fully integrated education management system combines all aspects of a student data (SIS), student learning management (LMS) and curriculum management (CMS) system, simplifying school-wide management and allowing for schools to focus on student learning and outcomes.
Since 2013, ASSIST has streamlined education management for schools around the globe. The company’s mission is to share this cost-effective, comprehensive solution making a significant difference for education worldwide.# # # #
DiME, Desarrollo en Métodos de Enseñanza S.C., established in 2006, is a Flex Academy in Jalisco Mexico. DiME is dedicated to creating, developing and implementing blended learning middle and high school programs with the purpose of enhancing the academic and personal performance of its students and providing pathways to local and US universities.