The Parents Portal gives the parent an opportunity to view their student’s schedules, performance, and statement of accounts. Parents also have access to review current contact information, which may be used to help the school maintain accurate contact data. Online Reporting is the innovative use of media and communication technologies such as emails, blogs, websites and text alerts in order to keep parents informed about their children’s achievements, progress, behaviour and attendance. It is important for teachers and schools to consult parents on how they would like to be kept informed on the progress of their child. Some parents prefer face – to – face contact, whereas others may favour the convenience of tools such as text alerts or online reporting to gain a quick insight of their child’s progress. A website is one of the most effective communication tools that is easily accessible for most schools and parents. It allows access to regular updates such as timetables, school trips, and learning tools supporting parents and involving them in school life (Russel, 2009).
Web – based system is used in most businesses for better communication. It creates a customer portal that could provide a range of services in a unified, centralized way. Using online – based systems, there is no need for modifications to the applications on the mission – critical mainframes. The Internet offers greater speed and cost-efficiency when compared to manual way. A portal is defined in the Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary (2008) as “a site serving as a guide or point of entry to the World Wide Web and usually including a search engine or a collection links to other sites arranged especially by topic.” Tatnall (2005) writes that a web portal provides a personalized gateway that aggregates information and allows access to a variety of resources and services that are relevant to the person seeking them. For parents this would include the ability to connect with information and services relevant to their child’s learning and activity at school, through any computer connected to the World Wide Web (Williamson, R. D., & Johnston, J. H., 1998).
Communication between schools and families is essential for building trusting relationships that foster parental involvement. Parental involvement in schools and social institutes is necessary for youngsters to develop successfully and to make decisions that will have positive outcomes for their futures. As society becomes increasingly dependent on technology, schools are investing more time and money in technological means of communication. Access to computer and internet technologies is increasing all over Europe. In work places and schools, both educators and parents are provided with access to electronic communication (Rogers & Wright, 2007). It is proven that regular communication from school to parents is critical to the success of children .It is well established that building home – school partnerships is a powerful avenue for increasing the satisfaction of parents and the community with schooling and for improving schools. Parents’ involvement in their child’s education is a key factor in the child’s scholastic success.
Parental participation ranges from paying little or no attention to overt hovering. As the teacher, he must help manage the parental participation so that students are accountable for their own learning. At lower level parents are more active in school participation. Communicating frequently is essential, but the teacher does not have to meet with parents every month or even contact them at home. Instead, he can be in touch by sending parents a weekly or monthly class newsletter that highlights the activities and events going on in the classroom or sending an e – mail with necessary information when it is needed. He can also send home reports if one of the students does something outstanding. He can use a social network, e – mail, put in on a (secured) website, etc. (Harington, 2008). Additionally, as the discourse between homes and schools increases, understanding improves, suggestions are shared, and positive attitudes are more easily maintained. For instance, in 1984 in Western Europe only 8.2% of the households surveyed had computers, while in 2003, 61.87% of the households had computers and 54.7% had Internet access.
In 2008 in the Netherlands, 84% of the families with children between two and 21 years had at least one computer with fast internet. The most of the families are multimedia families nowadays. A recent survey of 4,000 adults in 20 cities in the USA conducted by Opinion Research Corp. and America Online showed that 41 percent of Americans check e – mail first thing in the morning — and a whopping 61 percent say they check their personal e – mail while at work (eSchoolMedia & eCampus News, 2011). Android Application
The Google Android Operating System is used in a lot of major smartphone brands available today. It is one of the most popular platform which is used for developing Android applications. With sufficient knowledge regarding the development, Android leads to milestones of achievement through the development of Android application. Technical knowledge and talent is a pioneering need for developing exceptional applications on the Android Platform. The Linux kernel, Daivik and SQL Lite database are some of the basic tools and techniques to build master Android applications. Using them, the Android application developer and programmer teams can deliver various custom – made Android applications (HiddenBrains InfoTech, 2011). Some typical characteristics of Android development are:
Low development cost
Rapidly growing platform
Provides support for interactive media features
Linux core is responsible for stability of the Android applications Vast, comprehensive library for graphics, media and other tools Android SDK helps in formation of rich and unique applications
The software for the mobile phones is loaded in the Android. The android foundation is comprised of the operating system (OS), the middleware, main programs, and a Software Development Kit (SDK). The SDK allows the designers with the Application Programming Interface (API) and resources needed for development. The submission platform is of an open character. This permits the designers to develop the programs and easily spread them. One can even sell them through the World Wide Web. The wind turbine is very less because the android is free. There are a number of advantages of this mobile platform. Some of the major advantages of this are as follows:
Android is Linux – based.
It allows quick collection of details.
It also provides the correct details desired.
The cycle is greatly reduced.
The event resources are simple to use.
All the details and solutions are offered to the designers without any biases. It provides affluent internet browser amenities as well. This allows the creator to provide improved solutions. The use of the mobile phones to access the World Wide Web is increasing day by day. There are many mobile phones that have operating systems based on Android. If the business wants its web page to be appropriate with these mobile phones then the web page needs to be designed or altered. This is where Android application development performs an important role. The users of Android mobile phones want the phone to be used not only for telecommunication but also as an office computer. The customer may need some specifications to be added on to the android handsets. This is another situation where the Android Applications becomes necessary (Bryanstrang, 2012).
Review of Related Studies
Traditional reports can be replaced with regular and up – to – date online reports which parents can access whenever and wherever they happen to be. Being able to access their child’s educational information as and when they wish has already been very successful in many schools with parents gaining greater understanding of day – to – day school life. Research undertaken by the Department for Children Schools and Families (DCSF), entitled ‘Parental Involvement in Child’s Education 2007’, revealed that 44 percent of parents expressed work commitments as the main barrier to greater involvement in their child’s education. For busy working parents and those whose work necessitates travel, online reporting could hold the key to ensuring that they are kept informed and up to date regarding their child’s progress (Christine Thompson & Jo Lee, n.d.). The AMA Education System (AMAES), a network of universities and colleges in the Philippines offering computer training, has upgraded its Information Technology (IT) infrastructure with Oracle’s PeopleSoft Campus Solutions.
The solutions provide a web – based system that enables the institution to manage student administration processes, including prospect management, admissions, student records, enrolment, curriculum, advisement, transfer credit, student financials, financial aid, graduation and alumni relations. Edwin Santos, Chief Information Officer of the AMAES, said that the deployment of the new IT infrastructure took 12 months to complete for the first 12 campuses. That includes the AMA Computer University and 11 trimestral campuses of the AMA Computer College. The application suite will also be implemented across the rest of AMAES entities, including AMA Computer Learning Center (ACLC), AMA International Institute of Technology (AIIT), ABE Colleges, AMA School of Medicine and AMA International Aviation Academy. Estopace (2012) quoted the statement of Santos that is, “The primary advantage of the solution for us is it enhances service delivery. That includes service delivery to our students, who are our prime customers, and service delivery to the parents, as both would have access to the portals. The second advantage is ease of deployment.
Since AMAES is also expanding its business base, it gives us a lot of flexibility in deployment to other campuses since the solution is centrally hosted and in the cloud.” The most important benefits to students and parents, according to Santos, is the real-time access to information about their payments, grades, courses taken, schedules and information on future subjects to be offered. AMAES is also working to include an online payment gateway to allow students to do any transactions at home. “Mobile integration is something we are looking forward to,” Santos disclosed. “For now, our concentration will be more on deploying the serve to all our branches and campuses” (Estopace, 2012). Engineer Arnel Hibo, First Vice President of AMAES, added that the management side of AMAES will also have access to real – time information covering academic and administrate functions for all the campuses (Estopace, 2012).
Justification of the Present Study
The system called, “Parents Portal with Android Application” for the AMA Computer College – General Santos City, has similar features with that of the Oracle’s Peoplesoft Campus Solutions. Both systems provide a wide avenue of information for parents, which is critical to the success of the students. This avenue does not limit information through the traditional method of query. Instead, it provides and facilitates information accessibility such as updates on grades, fees, and student class schedules. On the other hand, the Parents Portal, is limited to the local campus
and is only intended for both the parents and the administrators hence, it is not intricate and is easier to use. Moreover, less internet traffic comes as a result of the non – complexity of the system. It also has the capability of sending and receiving messages regarding student concerns. Most of all, the system can be integrated to mobile phones, smartphones, and tablets through the Android Operating System and can still provide accessibility even if offline because of its own database.