Blog

Insights and Trends in Student Enrollment

RFP Technical Requirements for School Application Management

Posted September 9, 2016

An Application Management Solution for Your Unified Enrollment School System

Cities implementing a unified enrollment school system typically build or contract out for an application management system (AMS) to collect and store application data from families. A request for proposal (RFP) process is typically used to identify a contractor. Here is a basic set of sample technical requirements for an AMS that a city could edit and customize to meet its specific needs.

 

SAMPLE FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENTS

Overall Functionality:

  • Customizable user interface so that AMS can include logo and branding of the overall initiative.
  • Collecting applications, storing data securely, and displaying lottery results to parents/students, schools, and staff.
  • Accommodation of different types of users, including:
    • Central administrators with “super admin” access;
    • Individual parent/student users able to select school choices and rank them in preferred order;
    • Hotline/support staff users able to view, edit and submit applications on behalf of parents;
    • School users able to view a limited set of application data and make limited edits to applications according to defined rules (example: approve or deny sibling preference for applicants to their school only); and
    • Magnet/selective school users able to view a different limited set of application data (example: recommendation letter submitted by applicant to their school).
  • Allowing parent/student users to indicate that an applicant is eligible for a specific school preference, and giving school users at that school access to approve or deny eligibility for the preference (example: preference for siblings of current students).
  • Linking sibling applications together in the database if submitted by the same parent user (to allow for the administration of “sibling accepted” preference within the lottery).
  • Using the address provided on the application, identifying whether an applicant is eligible for any geographic-based preferences, and attaching any preferences to the particular school selection in the database (example: applicant lives within the specific catchment area or zone of a school and is eligible for a neighborhood preference at that school, but the preference does not apply to the applicant’s other school selections).
  • Customization by school to allow for a unique preference structure at each school and unique sets of questions at different school types or for different grades (example: may require a special set of questions or requirements for magnet school selections — such as recommendation letters or essays — or unique questions seen only by Kindergarten applicants).
  • Capacity to manage waitlist data using the same business rules as applied to lottery applications (example: neighborhood preference) so that applicants are slotted onto the correct place on the waitlist and status is updated in real-time for parents/students/schools to view.

 

Parent/Student User Functionality:

  • Ability to create parent/student user accounts using emails OR mobile phone numbers.
  • Ability to edit applications and re-submit prior to key deadlines.
  • Ability to save and print PDFs of submitted applications.

 

Administrative User Functionality:

  • Ability to export application data to Excel.
  • Ability to send mass emails and texts to applicants or sets of applicants through AMS (example: message to applicants with their lottery results, or reminder to all applicants who have saved but not submitted an application to finish and submit prior to deadline).
  • Preventing duplicate applications when possible, and allowing for the screening and deletion of duplicate applications which are identified later.
  • Reporting and analysis features to allow central administrators and school users to produce reports on application data (example: individual school can run report to see the number of school applications they have received by grade, preference, and ranking (number of applications on which their school was selected first, second, etc.)).
  • Audit trail for any changes to applications.

 

Accessibility-Related Functionality:

  • Accessibility in multiple languages.
  • Mobile compatibility so that parents/students can submit applications and view lottery results on a range of devices, including smartphones.

 

WANT TO LEARN ABOUT SCHOOLMINT’S APPLICATION AND LOTTERY MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS? Check out our full suite of solutions here, or watch our product webinars here.

Enrollment Management
Outreach and Engagement
School Choice

Make a Stand-Out First Impression through Family Outreach & Marketing

In a field of greater school choices and increased competition, school organizations are working hard to make a positive first impression on families. This video blog demonstrates how SchoolMint's Outreach and Marketing solution can help districts and charter networks deliver a better family experience, showcase their school and program offerings, and gain critical insight into their recruitment and enrollment goals.
READ MORE
September 12, 2017
Diversity and Inclusion
Enrollment Management

Inside SchoolMint: A Fresh Approach to Customer Success

Working with over 5,000 partner schools, how does SchoolMint support them all to have a positive experience transforming their enrollment processes? An attentive, customized approach to Customer Success is an essential part of the answer. Read our interview with Katy Burk, Director of Customer Success, to learn more.
READ MORE
July 20, 2017
Application and Lottery
Enrollment Management
Outreach and Engagement
School Choice

Automating School Choice Enrollment in the Real World

Three school leaders discuss their transition to an online student enrollment system and delve into how they realized operational efficiencies and time savings, improved data integrity, and transformed the family experience. Read about their experiences and lessons learned from Spring Branch ISD, Noble Network, and Alliance.
READ MORE
June 26, 2017
School Choice

2017 National Charter Schools Conference - Reflections and Lessons Learned from our CMO

The 2017 National Charter Schools Conference was filled with inspirational and informative keynote and breakout sessions that spurred perplexing questions and ideas. In a blog written by our Chief Marketing Officer, Lory Pilchik, read as she shares her lessons learned from charter leaders nationwide.
READ MORE
June 16, 2017
Application and Lottery
Enrollment Management
Outreach and Engagement

2017 National Charter Schools Conference Recap

Throughout our three days in D.C., we enjoyed networking at our booth and attending an eclectic mix of keynotes and breakout sessions, with topics ranging from policy, leadership, governance, and operations. Meet the conference team below and read about their experience interacting with charter leaders nationwide!
READ MORE
June 15, 2017