New grading system set to replace Edline next month

Leighton Johnson, Staff writer

It’s time to get focused. Brevard Public Schools will begin to transition to Focus, a learning management system to replace Edline half way through the first semester of school. The school board’s decision to switch from Edline was caused by the board’s decision to terminate its partnership with Blackboard after issues regarding the renewal of Edline’s contract occurred during negotiations.

Edline will become deactivated by Oct. 15 and teachers will be required to transfer all their grades and student records to the new program. Focus will cost the district $1.04 million for a contract that will last for the next five years. In order to ease parents and students into the new system, the school will use a series of voicemails as well as demonstrations and tutorials for parents during an informational PTA meeting scheduled for Sept. 25.

“Teachers will print out their reports from the beginning of school,calculate them into one grade then submit only the final grade,” Assistant Principal Glenn Webb said. “The new website is more streamline and user-friendly. For example, if I wanted to look at my son’s SAT scores,it’s one click away. Also, if my son got failing grade I would automatically receive an email telling me the grade and what class it was in. That’s something Edline never had.”

The layout of the website brings an easy-to-use drop menu where all classes can be accessed. Additionally, Focus claims to work along with teachers to provide the best for them with instant grade updates and customizable applications such as calendars.

Junior Mahmood Syed said he believes the new system will benefit schools.

“Edline just looks outdated and the number of times I would get a report with errors in it was a little troubling,” Syed said. “Hopefully,Focus gives students an easier way to interact with their teachers.”

The new software allows vendors in competition with one another to create add-on products that increase a system’s (or device’s) flexibility, functionality, interoperability, potential use           and useful life.

Sophomore Nathan Foo said he isn’t too concerned about the transition.

“As long as my teachers can post grades and I can talk to them like Edline, I don’t see any problems in switching to Focus,” Foo said.

2D Art teacher Matthew Henderson said he’s taking a wait-and-see approach.

“Edline could be tricky sometimes,but it’s an overall solid system,” Henderson said. “I’ve heard good things about Focus but haven’t been able to see everything it has to offer. Hopefully,Focus can be a proper substitute. My only concern is how to ease the new system for the students and parents.”