Holy Family school division pleased with new student info system

The Holy Family Roman Catholic Separate School Division is happy so far with how the new provincial student information system, MySchoolSask, is working, said education director Gwen Keith.

She provided an update on the MSS system to the board of trustees at their meeting on Wednesday evening, and pointed out some of the other school divisions have not had a similarly positive experience with it so far.

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Holy Family is one of the 13 school divisions in Saskatchewan who have switched over to the new provincial information system since the start of the school year.

The MSS is mainly for student information, keeping track of marks, classes, demographics, report cards, attendance and contact info as part of the provincial database of students, along with staff and school details.

Four education directors from the divisions involved have volunteered to form a management council for MSS, and the school divisions using it have shared some of the lessons they have learned in implementing the new system.

“As you know, we’re well into the implementation of MSS in a very positive way,” said Keith. “I know sometimes trustees get asked for feedback on the system.”

Board chair Bruno Tuchscherer said in discussions he’s had with other board chairs, there has been some negativity about the MSS in other school divisions.

“There’s no negativity here,” said Keith.

“Our people were quite satisfied with the help we get,” added Tuchscherer.

One advantage Holy Family has is they only deal with K-9 grades and not high school, noted Keith, plus they have resources they can use when questions arise about the system.

The new system was introduced to streamline data about students across the province, as there were several different programs in use by the various school divisions, and the intent is for every school division to be on the same system.

One of the changes this year was a move away from hard-copy report cards to digital ones, where parents can go onto the school’s website and access their child’s report card or print it out, or get it printed out at the school if they don’t have computer access.

• In other school board business, the four school divisions in the Regina Archdiocese met with Archbishop Donald Bolen, and reviewed how the relationships are working between the local schools and parishes, and if there are any challenges that need working out.

The four school divisions are Moose Jaw, Yorkton, Regina and Holy Family in the southeast.

Archbishop Bolen initiated a program where there will be a gathering on May 21, where the priests from the archdiocese will gather and they will talk about a collaborative partnership between the parishes and the schools.

This would provide an opportunity for education of parents and other parish members, and to lead in other activities that can make the relationships even stronger than they are now, said Keith.

She noted that Archbishop Bolen will be doing the opening mass this fall in Weyburn for Holy Family.