The free online gradebook LearnBoost has added parent and student accounts to its platform, giving teachers the ability to share grades, assignments, and calendars and to bridge the classroom and home.
Teachers generate a unique access code for each additional user, which ensures that the data is safe and secure. This new feature will let students and parents see real-time updates as teachers enter their grades. It also allows parents to consolidate the information from several child accounts, so that they can view academic and attendance information, even if their children attend different schools.
Why This Matters
Too often, it seems as though our discussions of education and education reform are only concerned with what happens in the classroom. Student achievement and assessment rests solely on the shoulders of teachers. The missing pieces in all of this are, of course, active participation from parents in their children's school lives, as well as a better understanding and accountability on the part of students.
Grades shouldn't be something that come in an envelope once a quarter. It shouldn't be a SURPRISE! that you or your child is acing or failing a subject. It shouldn't be a shock that your child has a string of absences.
The move to open up the lines of communication between teachers and families helps make education more collaborative and more transparent -- that's crucial if we're going to actually support students (and, I'd argue, support teachers).