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What happens when you have an integrated LMS

LMS learning display with teacher and multiple screens

Picture this: 

It’s that time of month to pay your bills online.  Instead of all the payees being listed in one place and just entering in the number you want to pay and hitting send…what if you had to go individually to each payee’s website first, and then enter a confirmation code from your bank second, toggling back and forth. It would be frustrating and time consuming. But lucky for most people, bills are due just once a month. 


Unfortunately, for teachers with the redundant tech stacks they’ve been given, they have to deal with this daily for updating grades, assignments, and coursework. It’s the unspoken admin work of teaching, and it's draining.


A Learning Management System, or LMS continues to be a necessary tool for school and student engagement, yet there is a lot of frustration around it—especially for teachers. The problem: it’s a required tool, but it’s not working the way they are teaching. The way they are teaching needs access to all school systems, which means integration. 


When looking to see if your Learning Management System truly integrates with your private school management software, these features and benefits will come to light.


Let’s talk about teachers

There’s so much emphasis on parent engagement today—but, who are the cheerleaders for the engagement? Teachers. Communication, lessons, assignments, it all starts with the teachers. It appears today’s teachers are receiving a teetering stack of technology to communicate and lesson plan, when it really could be simple through an integrated LMS approach. There’s an app for sharing photos of what’s happening in the classroom, there’s an app for talking to the parents, another for reminding them of upcoming events. Maybe there’s an app to sign permissions slips etc…and then there’s the LMS, which should be the bulk of the teacher’s time, but somehow we’ve gotten distracted by the photos and the group chats and so on. All of these apps also have a way to message the teacher! Can you imagine checking 3-4 different platforms of communication while trying to teach your class? 


If your LMS is working for your teachers, here’s what it
should include: 


Attendance - Start the day off easy by taking attendance in the same screen your lesson plan is in. That’s easy, no more logging into the SIS and doing it there. If it’s integrated it will sync right over to the SIS (Student Information System) making life easier for your main office as well.  


Whole child profile - Make it simple for teachers, with all student information on one page. That might include medical, legal or intercommunication notes. Teachers have a full picture of the whole child immediately. No searching through many platforms to see if the student who was stung by a bee has an allergy.


Flexibility and customization - Teachers are all going to have a unique way of teaching and the LMS will only work for them if they can customize their lesson plan to their teaching ways. Creating assignments would allow for comments, collaboration with other students, revisions, and grades—all in one place. Some teachers have to calculate test scores in the LMS and then input them into the SIS for the grades. That’s starting to feel like our bill paying analogy!


Collaboration - Work with other teachers - When creating tests and assignments teachers can see on a calendar showing the other assignments their students have due from their class and help spread out the workload. The ability to share lesson plans with other teachers also helps with a more collaborative teaching environment.


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Let’s talk about parents

Think about the new-to-the-school parents, in most schools they are told to download some form of communication app, then there are apps the teachers use to share photos of what’s happening in the classroom, there’s the student information system that communicates attendance issues to the parents…and after all of these downloads, they quickly become overwhelmed with app fatigue, and their desire to be engaged dwindles. Maybe that’s an exaggeration, but you get the jist. Just like the teachers trying to respond to parents on many different platforms, the parents don’t know where to look to see what’s happening in class. An integrated LMS will connect parents to a dashboard with all necessary information about their child. A truly integrated LMS becomes so important for easy parent engagement, here’s why:


Administrative - All of the admin tasks for parents are in one place, such as: any permission slip that needs to be signed, or parent teacher conference sign ups. This is also extremely helpful for divorced households, because there’s no mixup of a permission slip going to one house and not coming back! Also, parents have access to what assignments are due and can ask questions to the teacher. Easy admin tasks for the parents makes for easy engagement. 


Integration - Attendance and grades are also in the same parent dashboard. There’s no wondering what their student’s grades are and no late night conversations about assignments not being turned in because every update made to this dashboard is in real time (we aren’t waiting for a sync or for teachers to input grades into a different system). 

Communication - If the LMS is integrated with your private school management system, all school alerts will be received in the same place. That means if tuition is due, the alert is in the same place where there’s a missing assignment. How easy is that?

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Let’s talk about the kids

An integrated LMS fosters the whole child approach. Academic outcome for the students is important, but so is developing and nurturing the child emotionally. An integrated LMS will connect with all data on the child giving teachers and their parents a full picture of what’s happening. Some of these features might include:


Behavior trends - Teachers would have access, not just to grades, but attendance trends in other classes, as well as any positive behavior or negative behavior that was noted by other teachers to applaud or keep an eye on. This makes the red flags more clear if there is a complete snapshot in one place for a teacher to see. 

Assessments - What if students could self-reflect on their own performance? Their essay responses become a dialogue with the teacher instead of a one and done response. It also fosters a think-outside-the-box approach to interactive learning.

Monitoring  - Allowing teachers to monitor students and categorize their notes on each student in a dropdown menu such as, emotional, academic, confidential, and restricted content helps again keeps all relevant information about the child on the platform teachers use the most. If the LMS is integrated with the rest of the private school management software, administrators will have access and be notified if needed. 


An integrated LMS helps private schools across all departments to save time and collaborate while also helping students and parents easily engage. However,  none of this matters if the LMS is not:

  • Easy to access
  • Easy to navigate
  • Easy to use 

AND most importantly—it has to be secure. Is the LMS company following the most rigorous security procedures (are they ISO27001 certified)? Also, are they following the data privacy laws around student data? Learn more about what to check for on our security and privacy blog.


An LMS makes learning flexible and accessible anywhere, but an integrated LMS engages learning from all departments of your school. It takes a village…or a school, right?