PowerSchool problems

Seniors face transcript issues with transition to PowerSchool

By Symon Knox, Staff Writer

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On Sept. 25, 2017, the school board approved the purchase of PowerSchool, a system that would theoretically combine a variety of systems we use for management and virtual learning into one cohesive system.

With any new program, glitches are expected but from what I can tell, no one expected how awful this system really would be at first. It started off rough when students had no way of finding their schedule in the weeks leading up to school unless you had previously saved it on a as a PDF or somewhere other than Skyward. On the first day of school, my little brother was able to troubleshoot his way into the system by trial and error of logging on multiple times and going through Google, so it was possible quite a few other students were also able to do so. But there was still a large number who were left clueless on what their first hour was until they went to the rotunda that morning.

Some of the initial issues like logging in were ironed out fairly quickly, but nearly a month into the school year teachers and students are still faced with major inconveniences.

Even though its annoying, all these problems so far are tolerable, and I am willing to cooperate and be patient because I understand that the district is trying their hardest to keep everyone happy. But one thing that I am less willing to be patient for is the inability to receive our transcripts.

Without access to our transcripts, seniors and early graduates are not able to apply for college and a number of scholarships. While talking to a group of counselors in student services, I was informed that as of Sept. 11 there were more than 80 students at Lawrence High and more than 100 students at Free State who have sent in requests for their transcripts, and the number is growing every day.

Students who are applying to colleges that have limited scholarship funds are being put on hold because transcripts are required for consideration. When applying to a school that awards scholarships with a restricted amount of funds, we are being put behind all other applicants who apply after us because the application cannot be fully processed without a transcript. This means that we may be losing out on hundreds or thousands of dollars.

I understand that this problem is slightly out of the control of Lawrence Public Schools, but it seems like there are little to no efforts being made to compensate for the limitation that is being put on us.

Without access to our transcripts, seniors and early graduates are not able to apply for college and a number of scholarships. ”

Our applications can’t be processed because of inefficiencies with the district’s learning management system. We deserve to be rewarded for how hard we have worked the past 13 years and especially the past four years. We should not be penalized because of a system that was not ready to do all of the functions the district requires.

I have been told that transcripts are being built and it is a top priority for our PowerSchool team, but it would have been nice to have been told this information without having to talk to three different people and having to send more than 10 emails. This should be information we are getting daily updates on. This is our future after all.