Alma is a comprehensive student information system for schools and districts

App of the Week

Schools and districts use Alma Student Information System (SIS) for comprehensive student information management, including admissions, scheduling, course management, reporting, staff and family communications, and standards management. Alma’s features and functions help schools and districts future-proof their student information systems and practices and focus on the whole student.

New upgrades for the 2021-22 school year are:

  • Navigator, among the market’s first in-app SIS implementation guides, helps schools more easily switch to the Alma SIS system, dramatically reducing migration headaches and setup time. Navigator provides users with step-by-step onboarding instructions, project management tools, and shows the progress of the migration.
  • App Center which allows districts to easily integrate third-party apps into the SIS. The App Center eliminates the need for users to choose between an SIS and a third-party app that is central to their school function, making Alma a comprehensive SIS solution.
  • Multilingual Parent and Student Portals which allow families to use the Spanish version of the portals to register their children and access their grades. The update includes the AlmaStart enrollment and registration feature, as well as the AlmaNow portal for mobile devices which allows families to access the system in either Spanish or English on a mobile device.

 

 

Formats/platforms used:

Alma can be used on laptops, tablets and desktop computers. The Parent and Student Portals can also be accessed via any mobile device in multiple languages.

 

Primary website URL:

https://www.getalma.com/

 

Problem Solved:

Schools have lots of student information to manage, and it can be time consuming to do this using multiple data management systems. Alma addresses this challenge by providing comprehensive student information management, all in a single platform. Schools use Alma to manage student information related to admissions, scheduling, course management, reporting, staff and family communications, and standards management.  This includes everything from bus routes and calendars to group messaging for parents and teachers, student transcripts and student demographic data.

Teachers use the platform to access information they need to drive their instruction, reevaluate their assessments and personalize learning for their students.

Parents can use Alma’s Parent Portal to register their children and access their assignments and grades in real time. The Student Portal provides students with to-do lists to help them stay on top of assignments. The parent and student portals also let families communicate with teachers and are accessible via mobile app. The portals are now also available for parents in Spanish, which allows schools to better support Spanish-speaking families.

 

 

Grade/age range:

Alma SIS is used by school administrators and parents to help manage information for students in grades K-12.

 

Does your product address core/supplemental/special needs/extracurricular/professional development?

Alma SIS helps schools manage information related to these categories, but it does not directly address these areas.

 

What is/are the pricing model(s) for your product?

Priced affordably, Alma offers school, district-wide, and state-level customized pricing options.

 

What makes ALMA unique?

Alma is built with the user in mind. As a company made up of 80% former educators, Alma’s innovative platform keeps school communities future-ready with its ease of use, flexibility, and support of progressive educational practices.

The user-friendly interface is designed to work for educators, saving hours of time, eliminating duplicate entry, and preventing the need for time-consuming workarounds. Alma drastically reduces the time and training associated with adopting and migrating to a new SIS.

The flexibility of Alma’s platform means schools can pivot at a moment’s notice. From mid-term scheduling changes to moving to remote or hybrid learning models, Alma provides schools with the most accessible experience for students and educators no matter the situation.

Alma supports all educational practices: traditional, progressive, and everything in between. Schools and districts that have adopted or are transitioning to standards or competency-based learning enjoy Alma’s robust grade books and report cards that are customizable to reflect their unique educational models. Schools also have the option to transition on a grade-by-grade or class-by-class basis.

Alma’s mission is to create powerful tools that streamline operations and empower educators to foster better student outcomes. We believe technology has a very real impact on the day-to-day activities taking place at a state agency, district, and school. Alma creates systems that save time, strengthen communication, and evolve as needs change ensuring long-term success.

 

 

Characteristics:

Alma’s goal is to continually design and improve a system that offers useful experiences to help educators, parents and students. For every project, we approach it by deeply understanding the problem, our users’ pain points and their objectives. Through collaborative efforts with our users, Customer Engagement, Product and Engineering teams, we design clear, usable and useful solutions to complex problems.

 

Here's what users are saying:

“As you can imagine, interoperability is a nightmare for districts as no one system can accommodate all our needs. Alma has not only made interoperability easier for us, Alma has single-handedly taken us from a good school district to a great one. Alma is quickly becoming the central nervous system for our entire district, especially now that the app center is available!”

- Sam Mormando, Tech Director, Garnet Valley School District, PA

 

“Over the past few decades, I have worked with many student information systems and Alma stands out as the best. Their customer service team is responsive, professional, and knowledgeable; truly top-notch. One of the most involved changes that a school district can make is that of changing student information systems (SIS). Having heard horror stories from other district leaders about making an SIS change, we were prepared for the worst. The ease of transition from our old SIS to Alma was notable. Although change is always difficult, some of our biggest resistors to the change on staff have become the biggest Alma supporters. Additionally, Alma has significantly improved communications between schools and home. Many parents have reached out to say that they love Alma for its ease of use and intuitive feel.”

- Randy Wormald, Assistant Superintendent, Merrimack Valley SD, NH

 

“Every year we have to submit data in a required format to the company that takes pictures of our students each year - Picture Day. Before the report builder was released, I had to pull our Picture Day information out of the spreadsheet data editor and run one of the precanned reports, throw the data from each of those into a google sheet and then use a merge tool to combine the information to end up with the report that I needed. There were a lot of steps, and it’s not that it was hard, but it was just “an evening.” An evening where I took work home and had to merge data together, as I often do. Today I went into the report builder and hand selected each of the fields that I would have needed for the Picture Day export and it took a matter of minutes. It was amazing. The report builder opens up the database to us, the user. It’s powerful!”

- Tom Walker, Technology Coordinator, Massac School District IL

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