Wausau School District, in northeast Wisconsin, wanted a versatile student information system (SIS) capable of managing a complex 21 period schedule. In addition, after 10 years with SASI, they were seeking an SIS that was Web-based and fully integrated to replace SASI’s antiquated silos of information. Infinite Campus was chosen because of its proven scheduling success, and its ability to bring Wausau’s data management into the 21st century.
For years, Wausau had compensated and worked around the limitations of their legacy SIS. Each school had its own server, which meant that upgrades or changes had to be made in each building and none of the systems could communicate with each other. With multiple points of data entry, chances for errors increased proportionately. Preparing reports meant gathering and compiling information from multiple sites, which was time consuming and potentially unreliable.
“The fact that our system was not Web-based was our biggest challenge,” said Kim Christensen, Wausau Project Manager. “We couldn’t talk to each other. It required 21 different upgrades whenever we were given a new feature.”
Infinite Campus, a Web-based system from its inception, provides Wausau with all the benefits of advanced technology, true integration and more than 15 years of delivering quality data management solutions. Off-the-shelf reporting functionality provides administrators with reliable information for analysis and planning.
In an effort to best serve student needs, Wausau has developed a complex system of modular class time. Based on a school day consisting of 21 periods, each 20 minutes long, classes might be two, three, or four modules in duration.
“Specific scheduling and attendance management is important to us. Parents, students and teachers love our new flexible system and don’t want a change,” said Jennifer Hollman, Wausau Administrative Technology Assistant. “Infinite Campus demonstrated that with Campus Schedule Wizard, our needs aremet easily.”
The Campus Schedule Wizard creates student schedules according to criteria established by the district. Combining the need to meet core curricular requirements and student elective preferences in a complex schedule is just part of what is available with this wizard. Class size, special needs, behavior issues and other priorities can all be part of the scheduling mix. Schedules can be established and tested in real time for optimum efficiency.
“We were very, very pleased with how quickly and smoothly scheduling went with Campus Schedule Wizard,” said Hollman. “Even after working with our old system for years, it took me 24 hours to run a schedule. With Infinite Campus, it only takes 30 minutes. Scheduling here has changed dramatically.”
Wausau recognizes the importance of engaging parents and students in the educational process. Through the functionality of the Campus Portal, parents and students can take a more proactive role in student success. Parents and students can log in to a student-specific page and access information on grades, assignments, behaviors, assessments, homework and comments from teachers.
The Wisconsin Cooperative Educational Service Agencies (CESA) provide services and support to districts across Wisconsin. Infinite Campus entered into partnership in 2006 with CESA 5, located in Portage, and CESA 7, located in Green Bay, to provide local training and support for Wisconsin customers throughout the state. “Our Infinite Campus trainer is Lois Biely from CESA 7 and our training has been phenomenal,” said Christensen. “She has been there for us every step of the way and is still coming over to make sure things are running smoothly.”
The Infinite Campus solution has given Wausau the advantages of a nationally recognized SIS with local services and support. They join the growing community of Campus customers in Wisconsin and will benefit from the on-going enhancements at no additional costs.
“We have already saved time and money with Infinite Campus. The ability to add customized fields and tabs, to share reports easily and to no longer manage back-ups has helped us to be more productive so we can spend more time doing other tasks,” said Christensen. “As we continue to use and learn the product, I’m sure we will continue to find additional cost-saving benefits.”