Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Standardizes on Business Objects

Agency uses solution to analyze student performance, comply with state and national education policies

Agency uses solution to analyze student performance, comply with state and national education policies

San Jose, CA and Paris — February 16, 2005 — Public schools are under increasing pressure from both state and national legislators to measure, report and improve student performance. To meet these challenges, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) said it is using Crystal Reports from Business Objects, a provider of business intelligence (BI) solutions.

Crystal Reports gives Missouri educators access to current academic performance data so they can analyze information, develop strategies to bolster student achievement, and comply with state and federal mandates.

Missouri school districts are evaluated and accredited by state education officials once every five years. School districts also must comply with federal requirements included in the No Child Left Behind Act.

Missouri DESE is the state agency responsible for 524 school districts and approximately 900,000 public school students in preschool through grade 12. Using Crystal Reports, the Missouri DESE can aggregate data at the district and state levels or drill down to the school, classroom or individual student level. Crystal Reports provides administrators with reports that measure student performance and enables them to perform trend analysis.

"Crystal Reports has improved our ability to turn around information quickly and use it to improve both student performance and operational efficiency," said Dr. Bert Schulte, deputy commissioner of the Missouri DESE. "Now we have a better way to examine how our students perform on state assessments. Administrators can do trend analysis on data that go back as far as 1997, whereas before our analytic capabilities and access to information were more limited. Crystal Reports is rather easy to use, and it provides useful information for local schools."

The Missouri DESE is also using Business Objects to track, understand and manage data on Missouri educators and the classes they teach. Administrators use this data to ensure that teachers are instructing classes that best match their qualifications. Superintendents, principals and teachers also rely on this data to develop curriculum, inform instructional planning meetings and solve potential problems.

Currently, more than 4,000 Missouri school district personnel are using Crystal Reports to evaluate student performance. Principals, superintendents, teachers and other administrators use the reports and have varying levels of access to information according to their position with their organization. Employees can also access information online and do reports from home or in the classroom and then distribute them via the Web.

"Given the reality of reduced funding and increased accountability, public schools today need to be more focused than ever on their students' performance and develop long-term strategies for maintaining high academic standards," said Jay Johnson, vice president of Government for Business Objects.