A Guide to Digital Transformation for K-12 Schools

Posted by MESHDS on Sep 15, 2021 9:00:00 AM

The COVID-19 pandemic caused education systems globally to undergo dramatic changes. For the first time, e-learning became the primary teaching methodology—undertaken remotely and on digital platforms.

Schools were traditionally brick-and-mortar—and any initiative to make them digitally remote was sure to meet with vigorous opposition in the past. But the pandemic changed it all!

Challenges faced by K-12 schools: Digitization to the rescue

Educational institutions always struggled for funds to upgrade classroom infrastructure and IT systems and were plagued with obsolete IT applications and poor digital infrastructure. 

The education sector ranked a low 14th out of 22 industries in the McKinsey Global Institute Industry Digitization Index, which measures the ongoing digitization of the US economy at a sector level.

K12 school administrators face various problems, from day-to-day governance, facilities management, handling high-strung parents, retaining highly qualified and experienced teaching staff and dealing with difficult students. Administrative hurdles and burdens on various school departments and processes are something they can do without!

What if technology could ease the burden of admissions and enrollments, fee collection and accounts, attendance records and exam paperwork?

Digital transformation can ease the massive burden of education records and cumbersome administrative processes in K-12 schools. Effective information governance is the key to many of the challenges these educational institutions face.

Which processes will benefit the most from digitization?

Some K-12 school manual processes that school administrators must digitize and automate:

1) Student data management 

Do you find your school's administrative staff manually typing and retyping student data at various times—from admissions to fee payments, from exam enrollments to extra-curricular activities—student data is collected manually by different departments. Students or parents waste precious time standing in queues, and school staff waste time and effort in repetitive and manual paperwork. Schools must transform these manual processes into digitized and automated systems to save time, effort and help students and staff focus on their core objectives and responsibilities. 

2) Academic records management 

Schools need to comply with regulations around long-term storage and retention of academic records. As students move on to higher education institutes, they need academic transcripts, report cards and letters of recommendation from the school office. Managing these records and retrieving them quickly and efficiently when needed is easier when schools maintain digital records. Paper documents are cumbersome to manage, expensive to store, and difficult to retain.  Document scanning of school records is an area that schools can no longer afford to neglect. K-12 schools can transform their legacy academic records and administrative documentation into manageable electronic formats by engaging a professional scanning services provider

3) Financial data management

Managing revenue and cash flow, including student billing, staff salaries, and maintenance costs of school facilities, is a significant administrative burden for the school office. 

Digitized workflows for fee collection, online forms, and digital payments help ease this burden. Digital records in the accounts receivable and accounts payable departments drastically reduce processing time, mitigates the risk of manual errors, and increases operational efficiency. Moreover, using a robust and advanced document management system means you can integrate all academic, administrative and financial records to other backend IT systems and school management systems, making all the data completely interoperable.   

Digital transformation: A framework for modernizing K-12 school systems

A comprehensive digital transformation program can benefit the educational process. As digital technologies automate many manual and cumbersome tasks, they transform the day-to-day working of the institution and leave staff and students free to engage in more value-added activities and effective learning. Digital transformation provides a framework to harness technology to meet the challenges K-12 schools face in records management. 

Let's take a look at some benefits of using a digitized education management system.

  • Bring all legacy records into a unified, centralized digital repository, improving remote access to critical documentation.
  • Automate the collection of student information.
  • Increase the level of safety and security of sensitive personal information.
  • Adhere to long-term record retention policies and achieve regulatory compliance.
  •  Provide a comprehensive digital platform, bringing together academic records, curriculum information, evaluation processes and administrative documents. 

MES: Helping K-12 schools manage documents digitally

At MES, we support K-12 schools in their digital transformation journey. We offer professional document scanning services and document management solutions that bring all your educational records onto one single digital platform. 

Digitize legacy records

We offer backfile scanning of legacy records. Our experienced project managers handle high-volume scanning projects efficiently and effortlessly, without data loss or damage to fragile paper documents.

Stay paperless!

We also implement cost-effective Day-forward scanning processes to maintain a paperless operation by digitizing every paper document at its source. 

Optimize processes

Our outsourced business processing services provide you support, improve your workflows and optimize your operational costs.

Scan everything!

Some schools may want to invest in scanners to continue the digitization project and scan incoming papers regularly. We also have a range of high-quality scanning hardware such as departmental scanners, workstation scanners and even production scanners for high-volume scanning.

We have the expertise to manage large-scale digitization of library books and journals, including scanning microfilms, microfiches, large-format prints and drawings, and odd-sized documents.  

Talk to MES to gain positive control and accountability over your student records and administrative documents. Get a free quote today and take the leap from being an online school to a truly digital institution!

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