South Australian Department for Education elevates learning and provides real-time access to student data with Civica’s cloud schools management software

State-wide deployment of cloud-optimised Education Suite simplifies access to important information and reduces administration time

SOUTH AUSTRALIA, ADELAIDE, 8 September 2020: Civica, a global leader in software for public services, is delighted to announce that the first 24 preschools from the South Australian (SA) Department for Education have gone live with their Education Management System (EMS) following the award of the contract in 2018. A modern, cloud-based, student-centred system built on the foundation of Civica’s Education Suite, the system integrates with technology partners to deliver comprehensive learning, administrative and financial management.

The EMS streamlines administration and elevates teaching as part of the Department’s vision to build a world-class education for the State, and upon completion in December 2022 will deliver a centralised system to more than 900 sites, 190,000 students and 30,000 teachers.

This first step marks a key milestone for the collaborative project between the SA Department for Education and Civica with the phase one roll-out to preschools, providing staff with online access to take attendance, as well as real-time access to demographic data and student medical information via standard desktop computers and mobile devices.

“This platform is modernising and transforming school and preschool operations,” says Scott Bayliss, Chief Information Officer at the SA Department for Education.

“It has great functionality which is streamlining school management tasks and will also help our teachers to provide individualised learning and track and report on each student’s progress.

“The first phase rollout has exceeded our expectations and the feedback from teachers has been overwhelmingly positive. We’re excited to get this into every school and preschool and expand the offering so that parents will have access to a dedicated and secure portal that they can log on to at any time and from any device to see information relevant to their child.

“The platform is an important enabler for our school improvement program and supports our aspiration to become a world-class education system,” he added.

Brett Gent, Director at The Lady George Kindergarten says, “I’m excited to be one of the first preschools to use the EMS and I was pleased to enrol the first student in the new system.

“I’m looking forward to exploring the improved functionality of the EMS, including the flexibility to use the system anywhere and on any device. I’m also looking forward to using the learning management system to look at innovative ways to support the children’s learning and to communicate effectively with their parents or caregivers.”

With COVID-19 coinciding with the first roll-out, Civica and the Department were required to quickly adapt the initial go-live approach to adhere to travel restrictions and ongoing health precautions. Many operations originally planned face-to-face such as workshops, project management meetings and clarification meetings were moved online.

“COVID-19 has highlighted the benefits of a cloud solution which enables school management and teaching and learning to be delivered from a web-based device at any time and from any location,” says Iain Finlayson, Managing Director, Civica Library and Education Solutions.

“We are pleased to be able to contribute to the success of the Department’s vision and delivery of EMS. Working with a strong Department team, together with a clear vision and a pragmatic approach focussed on outcomes for the school community and learners, we have delivered the fastest signing to implementation of a state-wide school’s management solution in recent history. The EMS strongly supports the vision that every child grows and it’s something we are proud to be part of.”

By the end of the year, 42 preschools are expected to be successfully using the EMS. The solution will include school administration software, centralised financial management tools to support budgeting, invoicing and procurement, and learning management.

Other EMS modules that are planned to go live in the future include cloud based learning management to simplify tracking and reporting on student learning, homework and assignments, a parent/caregiver portal with 24 hour access to timetables, homework, notifications, events, attendance and achievement, and business analytics to provide teachers, principals, education directors and the department with reports and data to support and guide decision making.