School districts nationwide have successfully found new ways to incorporate technology and computers in classrooms like never before. Now, Brookfield-LaGrange Park District 95 is hoping to bring its student registration practices into the 21st century by allowing parents to register their children online.
At the school board’s Oct. 22 meeting, Superintendent Mark Kuzniewski introduced a measure that would allow the district to streamline registration by enabling parents to register their children online and move away from the district’s paper-based registration.
Moving student registration to an online platform is one of Kuzniewski’s biggest short-term goals for the district.
“It’s pretty amazing to see what this can do,” he said. “The nice component is people will be able to see their fees online because, right now, you’re checking boxes for $10 here and $15 here, and this will be a system where you will click on what you want and don’t want.”
Essentially, the district is hoping to have the process work in a way that parents can simply log in to the district’s registration center from their home computers and enter information, upload documents and make payments without ever having to step foot in the schools.
Should parents need help, they would be able to reach out to the district or come into their child’s school and fill out the online forms with the assistance of a staff member.
According to Kuzniewski, the district has looked at five software vendors and is looking to lock in a two-year agreement with one of the companies.
After further presentations in November and school board approval, the district is hoping to select a company by February in order to test out the program in the spring.
Kuzniewski says the district’s goal would be to fully implement online registration for the 2016-17 school year, most importantly for incoming kindergarteners and other students new to the district.
Since the district already has a database for current students, the process for registering them would be much simpler.
“There seems to be a desire, particularly by the principal and registrar at [Brook Park School], to have this ready for kindergarten registration because they are considered new students to our district,” Kuzniewski said. “We essentially have new student registration, which are kindergarten students and anyone who is new to the district and then we have renewals.
“Doing this with kindergarten will allow us to pilot this.”