Follett’s Aspen to save N.Y. school district money, improve communication

Lauren Williams's picture
Thursday, June 6, 2013

Comsewogue School District in New York’s Suffolk County adopted Follett’s Aspen Student Information System (SIS) because it will not only save taxpayer’s money, but the SIS also will make the jobs of staff and teachers easier while boosting communication with parents.

“It will completely change the way we communicate in our district,” said Dr. Joseph Rella, superintendent, Comsewogue School District. “It will be better for our teachers and allow them to spend more time teaching. And it will allow our parents to be involved like they’ve never been involved before.”

Far more than a traditional SIS that allows school districts to manage their student data, Aspen links student information with curricular and educational tools in a single platform. It tracks class schedules, school events, overall student performance, athletic eligibility, and student health records. In addition, Aspen helps all members of a district stay connected, providing the ability to link administrators and staff to teachers, students and parents in a real-time, digital environment.

Dr. Rella said he and his district were not actively shopping for a new SIS when he was invited to an information meeting about the Aspen SIS near his district office held by Eastern Suffolk BOCES (Board of Cooperative Educational Services), which is an educational cooperative of 51 Long Island school districts. Eastern Suffolk BOCES had recently agreed to add Aspen to the list of five student management systems it makes available to its component districts, according to Hilna Zoob, program administrator of student data services for Eastern Suffolk BOCES.

Dr. Rella said Aspen represents a “one-stop shopping” opportunity for the district, and help them to consolidate what is now being done by no fewer than 10 different systems. Moreover, the Superintendent estimates his district will quickly recognize as much as $40,000 in savings by consolidating all their systems into one platform.

Further, Dr. Rella predicted his district’s parents will appreciate Aspen’s parent portal, helping them to be more engaged in their children’s learning by being able to access grades, attendance and other key information.

Zoob noted Eastern Suffolk BOCES would have a fully certified support team in place that will be schooled in the operation of Aspen. “We are very pleased with the level of support that the Aspen Implementation team has afforded us and the care and attention to detail they have supplied in this process,” she said. “Our support team is learning as much as possible and as quickly as possible in order to come up to speed for our districts.”

“I’m going to learn Aspen right along with everyone else,” Dr. Rella said. “It is vitally important for me to know it as well as anyone around here.”

Comsewogue School District, located primarily in the Port Jefferson Station and Terryville areas of northern Brookhaven Town, has a student population of nearly 4,000 students, spread over six schools, including four elementary schools.

For more information on Follett, visit www.Follett.com; for more about Aspen, visit www.FollettSoftware.com/Aspen.

About Follett’s K-12 Business

Follett is the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes books, reference materials, digital resources, eBooks and audiovisual materials, as well as pre-owned textbooks. Follett also is one of the leading providers of integrated educational technology for the management of physical and digital assets, the tracking, storing and analyzing of academic data, and digital learning environment tools for the classroom focusing on student achievement.

About Follett

Since 1873, Follett has served as the trusted partner in education for students and educators at all levels of learning. Today Follett delivers physical and digital learning materials, retail services, school content and management systems to more than 70,000 early childhood, primary and secondary schools, and on more than 1,000 college campuses. Headquartered in River Grove, Illinois, Follett is a $2.7 billion privately held company.