vCita LiveSite Gets an "A" for Solving District Scheduling Issues• Florida's 2nd largest school district schedules 7,000 students for monthly teacher conferences
• Appointments auto-sync with Outlook, Gmail and other calendar systems, eliminating over bookings
Pasco eSchool, the second largest school district in Florida, launched in 2009 with JoAnne Glenn, principal, at the helm. Pasco eSchool is a district-operated K-12 virtual school program in which students can access online coursework at home or in a learning lab in their school. Students can login to their lesson anytime and are graded as if attending a brick and mortar school. Pasco eSchool receives 31,000 course requests for 7,000 students averaging 4 to 5 courses per student. These courses are taught by 70 teachers that are remote, residing from Tallahassee to Fort Meyers, Florida.
Students regularly communicate with teachers through email; however, once each month teachers, parents and students have a telephone conversation together to discuss progress.
ABC = A Better Calendar
Pasco eSchool was using two web-based scheduling solutions, neither of which were able to manage multiple sources and reconcile different calendar feeds. With the high volume of appointments being made between students, parents and teachers, there were constant struggles getting calendars to sync, especially with Outlook and Google. Teachers and administrators reported being double booked, creating appointments and resolving conflicts. Teachers, students and parents were spending an increasing amount of time setting appointments, which created a perception that required communication was a barrier.
“It was challenging to schedule faculty meetings and other school activities without creating more scheduling conflicts for teachers,“ says JoAnne Glenn, administrator of Pasco eSchool. “With the high volume of meetings our district has each month, we needed a reliable solution that was intuitive and easy to use.”Seeking Knowledge
Glenn asked Danny Sesker, ICT Coach for Pasco eSchool to recommend a solution. Sesker researched, emailed and telephoned a wide variety of software providers. Sesker needed a solution that was compatible with the District’s Microsoft Exchange 365. He needed a solution that was not Flash-based, able to work on any mobile device. Sesker also had more than 70 teachers working remotely so he needed a solution that could work on any platform and easy enough for teachers and students to use. Sesker found the vCita LiveSite Web Engagement Platform.
And the Winner is...
“After scouring the Internet, I found vCita. It met all of my requirements, plus vCita offered the most features,” Sesker says. “The vCita LiveSite portal connects to the website. Students can locate a teacher and schedule their meeting directly through the website in one visit. The LiveSite portal cinched it for me.”
Glenn liked that vCita Online Scheduling software could track student appointments, tracking no-shows and cancellations. vCita could be easily branded to seamlessly align with Pasco Schools look and feel, and it was intuitive and easy to use. Plus, vCita was easy to use and could manage multiple calendars. Each appointment automatically syncs with Outlook, Google, iCal and more. Now Glenn could schedule staff meetings and eliminate the worry that calendars would double book.
To the Head of the Class
Teachers now have more time to teach rather than rearrange schedules. Pasco teachers can customize their schedules, easily display availability and automatically respond to appointment requests. Students can set teacher appointments anytime, anywhere on any device. With 70 teachers spread over 7,000 students and each required to have a monthly meeting, this averages at least 100 meetings per month with each teacher scheduled through vCita LiveSite Online Scheduling.
“vCita delivered as promised, taking the chaos out of scheduling teacher-student meetings,” says Glenn. “We feel fortunate to have found vCita, a company that was willing to work with us to find a comprehensive solution to our scheduling and tracking issues. vCita LiveSite is the perfect solution.”
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Special thanks to JoAnne Glenn, principal of Pasco eSchool and Danny Sesker, ICT coach for sharing their story.