Recollecting an incident that happened a few years ago... A parent of a young school girl who died suddenly received a letter from her school to improve her attendance. A typical case of poorly maintained school records and not-so-efficient database management system making an error to mail-merge a letter to all students who missed the school for a period of time. This not only caused so much distress to the family members but also to the school authorities to make a blunder un-intentionally. Incidence like this should give us all a better idea of why schools require an efficient School Administration Software System.
What Is School Administration?
Good practices are substantial for school performance. Although schools today are competing to come out top in a global comparison of quality school administration and management, there certainly are enormous challenges in terms of planning, staffing, organizing, communicating, directing, reporting, budgeting and keeping everything in control. Apart from files, functions, procedures and tackling human relations, every school will require a system that works parallel with the authority, children, parents, teachers and other staff.
School administration is a continuous process through which the members of a school seek to coordinate their activities and utilize their resources to accomplish the various tasks as quickly, efficiently and accurately as possible. This includes sound planning, good direction and efficient execution.
Why Do Educational Institutions Need A School Administration System?
The literature of school administration, management and development are loaded with efforts to define the required key qualities and by nature, this sounds quite rational. One has only to look at the successful schools by understanding how enormously their functions and functionalities vary from an ideal list of school virtues.
Yet this quest for excelling has become so intense that many schools, in concentrating on certain specific functions, stand in danger of losing their real concern.
The key criterion is to perform well and balance all your ideas, functions and people even under varying conditions. This includes; planning school programs and activities; directing school work, formulating task and executing policies; coordinating activities, evaluating teaching skills; supervising school programs; keeping records and reporting, communicating efficiently with parents and other staff members and so on. To achieve these objectives and to manage the details in a smoother way, every school should have a school administration software system.
The best school administration software can help schools automate their recurring functions and run in an infallible way.
“Grow from Managing to developing your School”
What Are The Key Qualities Of A School Administration Software System?
Academic administration is more like a marathon. It is easy to do it for a short time, but for the long haul, you have to have the right mindset and approach. Good systems offer a good approach. The following are the key qualities of a school administration software solution.
- Admission management
- Account management
- Student profile management
- Timetable management
- Homework/assignment management
- Laboratory management
- Transport management
- Attendance management
- Examination management
- Activities management
- Library management
- Hostel and accommodation management
- Staff management
- Curriculum management
- Food management
- Alumni management
- Online communication management
- Parents communication management
In short, the best school administration software can offer a school to simplify, automate and balance everything right from curricular coherence, creating and sharing meaningful experience in real contexts, mentoring, peer learning and creating a structured way of collaborative activity between the school plans and programme, communicate and manage everything to lead beyond borders.
Primary Purpose of a School Administration Software
How Can You Select A School Administration Solution?
There are a number of school administration systems available today in the market. Few are open source School Administration solutions, few are free School Administration software, few are paid, few are meant for single small set-up and few are ideal for multi-school set-ups. You can consider based on factors like affordability, customization, support and training. Pick up the one that fits your school’s specific needs.
For your convenience, you can check the entire list of top performing school administration software prepared by GoodFirms or just pick up one from the below listed 8 best free and open source school administration software.
Fedena open source school administration solution is built on the powerful programming framework, Ruby on Rails. Honoured by several awards, Fedena school administration software works well with both single and multiple school set-ups. The community version of the Fedena open source school administration software is made available for free download.
(Image Source: Fedena)
Key Highlights of Fedena:
- Scalable, usable, customizable and secured system
- User-friendly dashboard
- Different modules catering to different purposes
- A wide range of features
- Facility to communicate and message right within the dashboard
- Configure and manage multiple courses
- Create error-free Time-tables within minutes
- Record and organize student, parent and staff profile and other related information easily
- Secure personalized login credentials
- Generate various customized reports
- Create ID cards in a minute
- Create, update and be informed of school events and programs
- Schedule and manage exams easily
- Generate certificates
- Mark and track student attendance
- Excellent 24/7 support
- Flexible pricing for advanced features
- Support for mobile version
- Support for multiple languages
- App integration
- Payment gateway integration
- Email integration
Fedena open source school administration software allows you to build your own system by picking the modules that work well with your school set-up. It is an easy-to-use system that does not demand any technically sound hand to work. Anyone with a basic knowledge of computers and email should be able to manage the software well.
Fedena school administration system is currently used by more than 20 million users in over 40,000 educational institutions all over the world.
feKara is a simple, powerful, flexible and always accessible free school administration software that allows schools to manage their every-day activities right from admission to budgeting to pass-out of students easily.
(Image Source: feKara)
Key Highlights of feKara:
- Can handle multiple admins or users account
- Unique interface
- Customizable features
- Mobile and tablet versions are available
- Secure and reliable
- Outstanding support
- A wide array of features
- Can send multiple report summaries and notifications via SMS
- Offers complete fee management for monthly, quarterly, annually or even for a customized period.
- Basic accounting features are available right within the main dashboard
- Customized report generation facility
- Data export option facility
- Complete library management facility
- Weekly, monthly, annual examination management facility
feKara is currently available in nearly 15 languages. The pro version is totally free for all users. The software is capable of managing all elements of the school involving students, teachers, staffs, curriculum, programs, exams and other activities. The software is used by all forms of educational institutes right from Kindergartens to Schools to Universities to Tuition centres in over 40 countries.
The basic package of feKara school administration software is free for up to 50 students, 5 teachers and 1GB storage and 10 GB Bandwidth.
Gibbon is one of the top-rated free, open source and flexible School Administration Software system that support a wide array of educational experiences. The software fits well for all type of users including; teachers, students, administration staff, parents, and the management. Gibbon School Administration system offers an end-to-end workflow to conduct every day processes like planning to learning to examination to reporting in a smoother way.
(Image Source: Gibbon)
Key Highlights of Gibbon
- Unified access
- Fast student finder on the homepage
- The software comes with a set of flexible modules, each performing a set of actions as demanded by the users.
- Users can gain access to functionalities in just a click
- Core modules and themes easily integrate with other software systems
- Support for right-to-left text
- Support for UTF-8 encoding
- Manage easily fees, billing and invoices right within the dashboard
- Send messages to other groups
- Facility for crowd assessment
- Continuous report generation facility
- Error-free attendance data and reports
- Generate academic, behavioural, medical and special educational needs (SEN) alerts
- Plan and schedule lessons using smart blocks
- Advertise job openings
- Organize and share resources easily
Gibbon open source school administration software comes with 24 modules with a provision of 5 free additional modules. Also, the software being an open source gives the flexibility to the users to custom-build more features and functionalities.
The software is currently made available in 17 languages
Rated as the most malleable software, Gibbon can fit into any size of educational set-up and can meet a huge range of school administration and management needs.
OpenSIS is an efficient Open Source School Administration solution capable of handling all type of educations institutes.
(Image Source: OpenSIS)
Key Highlights of OpenSIS
- Modern responsive design
- Dynamic dashboard
- Secured and scalable
- Limitless student and staff demographics
- 360-degree information about students
- Facility to access data, update and get reports in real-time
- Manage discipline, goals, progress, address, graduation, attendance, course, fees, examination, parent info, registration, and medical and health management easily
- Facility of arena scheduling
- Integrated with Moodle LMS (bi-directional)
- Built-in messaging system
- Parent portal
- Core features are available to both single and multi-school mode
The community edition of OpenSIS school administration software is currently deployed by more than 30,000 institutions worldwide, catering to approximately 12 million+ students.
By following an agile methodology, the company focuses on developing the software time and again making it better every time. This transactional software is capable of capturing all the information right from student registration all the way through graduation.
OpenSIS school administration software supports up to 54 languages.
Rated as one of the best School Administration Software, SchoolTime fits perfectly for any type of institution. The software allows schools to create a thriving ecosystem of the engaged community.
(Image source: SchoolTime)
Key Highlights of SchoolTime
- 360-degree visibility
- Intuitive and well designed analytical dashboard
- Facility to visually interpret your school’s income and expenses
- Safe and secure portal
- 24/7 access to different types of users
- Can accommodate any complexity in processing grades and results
- Pre-integrated with more than 60 payment gateways
- Pre-integrated with 4 different types of email services and 10+ SMS service providers
- Supports more than 22 languages
- Allows schools to configure multiple boards of curriculum
- Automates actual classroom planning
- Create flexible timetable
- Access to multiple types of reports
- Integration with third-party accounting tools
- Multiple currency support
- The mobile version supports GPS tracking
- One on one chat facility
- Allows users to login with their registered mobile number
Other integrations include; Picasa/Flicker Integration, Google Drive, Cloud Doc Management with Box/Dropbox, Google SSO, Facebook/Twitter/Instagram SSO, QuickBooks Integration and Google Classroom Integration.
More than 7300 institutions spread across 135 countries are already using SchoolTime school administration software.
In short, SchoolTime open source school administration system automates the complete life-cycle of a student right from registration, admission till graduation pass-out.
The Toddler plan of SchoolTime school administration system is completely free and allows access to up to 50 students.
SchoolTool is a comprehensive school administration system that provides all levels of functionalities to multiple users based on their requirements. Developed specifically for NYS schools, the software is currently used by institutions across the World and is well known for its ease of use and time-saving features.
(Image Source: SchoolTool)
Key Highlights of SchoolTool
- Gain insight into student progress
- Analyze factors that contribute to dropouts
- Check student infraction data
- Get access to information on the go with the mobile version
- Drag and drop functionality in the master schedule builder
- Customizable grading scales and category
- Send push notifications
- Share assignments with parents
- Create customized reports
- Integration with transportation
- Integration with food services system
- Integration with online registration
- Track and monitor students and teachers
- View students’ history and attendance in just a click
- Point and click features
- Create user-defined screens
- Manage complex schedules
- Full access to SLO (student learning objective)
- Create tests, quizzes etc online and send them via the dashboard
- Provision for the discussion area
- Safe and secured
With a power to record, update and retrieve information about every student and their on-going activity in real-time, SchoolTool promises to be a highly usable and the most trusted school administration software solution available today.
The software is a free & open source school administration system.
RosarioSIS is a flexible, free and open source school administration software system that fits well with both single and multiple school set-ups.
(Image source: RosarioSIS)
Key Highlights of RosarioSIS
- RosarioSIS offers 10 main modules that include; School setup, students, attendance, activities, discipline, billing, grades, food service, users and scheduling
- Built-in PDF generation
- Enrol students, update information and edit easily
- Customize the field as per your requirement
- Print advanced reports
- Teachers can create assignments, schedule classroom sessions/modules, manage grades, print report cards, certificates etc
- Manage and consult the calendar easily
- Manage and consult school activities instantly
- Publish notes right within the dashboard
- Configure attendance codes
- Gain access to all information regarding any student in just one click
- Be notified of new discipline referrals the moment you login
- Track medical visits and immunizations for each student
- Manage school income and expenses
- Manage staff salaries
- Print statement
- Moodle LMS plugin
With the facility to embed YouTube videos or even attach a Word document or Excel document to Portal Notes, RosarioSIS open source school administration solution proves to be one of the most efficient systems that can help schools manage their day-to-day activities easily and quickly. RosarioSIS offers responsive design and fits well with the mobile and tablet version.
OpenEduCat School Administration Software can either be deployed as on-premise or as cloud online solution. The core features include modules that are primarily essential to run an educational institute.
(Image Source: OpenEduCat)
Key Highlights of OpenEduCat
- Easy to store and access all students’ information
- Manage all information right from a student’s application till admission till pass-out
- Easily maintain Faculty profile, payroll & expense, classroom scheduling, course scheduling etc
- Efficiently manage timetable, report card, transcript, curriculum etc
- Integrated communication
- Online enrolment facility via the dashboard
- Multiple evaluation facilities
- Anytime access to statistical reports
- Automated fees reminder
- Multiple payment gateways
- Easy reconciliation
In short, OpenEduCat is a flexible school administration software system which allows schools to manage their student information system, faculty information, course management, application & enrolment and examination management. The software also comes with integrated financial management.
OpenEduCat is available in 65 languages. With nearly 300 modules, the software is currently deployed by more than 750K users.
“Higher management qualities are directly associated with better educational outcomes”
Schools should relieve key staffs from the burden of administrative tasks.
High performing schools have software systems to assist and perform most of their day-to-day functions and activities.
A good school administration software will help school authorities to use data to drive instruction; continuously observe staff, teachers and gather performance feedback; support planning with lesson and classrooms; communicate and create a strong culture among students and teachers; update and maintain records; keep track of everyday functions and eventually develop a strong team to support and improve education.
While evaluating the best school administration software systems, it is ideal to go by your requirements and your school goals.
Sophia Jayden is a senior writer and a content marketing specialist. She has 10+ years’ experience in content writing and marketing. Currently, she is a staff writer at GoodFirms, a pioneering B2B research, review and rating platform. For more information about her work, you can reach out and start a conversation with her at [email protected]
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