After years of struggling with the system used to keep track of special education students’ information, the New York City Department of Education will be in the market for a new one.
A “Request for Expressions of Interest” will be issued by the district, according to an Education Week story by my colleague Christina Samuels. When published, this document will detail what the department expects of companies that might provide a new system. As of March 12, the REI is not yet posted on InfoHub, the department’s site.
Districts large and small are looking for new student information systems (SIS), as Purchasing Alerts in EdWeek Market Brief frequently highlight. Sometimes, they are replacing legacy systems that were designed specifically for a large school district, as is the case with the Hillsborough, Fla. district, which was in the market for two student information systems last year. One was for 217,000 PreK-12 students, and the other for 15,000 career, technical and adult education students. The district noted that it wanted commercially available products, and did not want to oversee the development of a custom-built system.
The New York City SIS was created specifically for special education. In “N.Y.C. Shelving Troubled Special Education Data System,” Samuels chronicles the troubles many educators and families of the district’s 224,000 special education students have had with the system, which went online in 2011. Five years later, an audit discovered that the system was—at one point—malfunctioning more than 800,000 times a day. Improvements have been made, but now the department is ready to pursue a new system.
Recent Purchasing Alerts from EdWeek Market Brief show a great deal of interest in new student information systems.
Last November, the Broward County, Fla. district, with 271,000 students, issued a Request for Information for an SIS, as it prepares to make a decision about a platform this year.
Montgomery County—Maryland’s largest district—issued an RFP for a new SIS late last year, with the intention of using the new platform, among other purposes, to eliminate legacy systems and consolidate systems where possible.
And the San Antonio, Texas district is currently seeking one that is integrated with enterprise resource planning, which covers various back-office functions in the district.
A recent Market Brief interview with a chief academic officer described how one district chose a winning vendor among those that responded to its RFP for a new SIS platform.
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