We currently have to break out to excel for our exam result analysis. This is because we have a high percentage of student who can legitimately be dis-applied from the headline statics, (High SEN, EAL and Mobility). As a result our MIS cannot give us A-C% (A-B% and A*-E% at KS5) from the perspectives we need and doesn't cope well with the complexity of the BTEC, OCR Nationals, Cambridge Technical. The MIS provider has also failed to solve this for us within their system.
We also have this problem for progress tracking throughout the school and need to filter / report against FSM, EAL, CATs, number of students in current cohort tat started in year 7 (i.e. a mobility metric). How do others build their reports?
This is not my specialist area, I've been asked to support our new data team and number one on our hit list is is a new MIS, however I suspect that what ever system we choose there will still be a need to break out into Excel. It would be really helpful to hear how others do it (vendors welcome to jump in, but no hard sell please!)
No MIS is perfect, but whatever you're using sounds terrible - care to share what it is?
We use SIMS and the exams module is quite capable of providing us with PI data and allows us to exclude students from the PI cohort where necessary.
We provide more in depth subject/class analysis via SISRA, and we use that throughout the year to monitor progress too. It's not without it's flaws, but it suits us for the time being and it is ever evolving.
On top of all that, I dump data out in to Excel to provide higher level summarised analysis for SLT and I'm currently in the process of creating an online student analysis system, showing in depth data for students in pre defined cohorts (we already provide this in the form of a giant print out on the staff room wall but I want to provide a live version on our intranet)
There is some disagreement as to *why* the MIS isn't meeting our needs. I will say that at this stage you are unlikely to buy it, if say you were to use IMLS to select a replacement for your current provision.
But back to the question: Does everybody break out to a 3rd party product to do their detailed analysis of performance data for SLT etc, or are there MISes out there that really can meet schools' analysis needs. A good summary of requirements is buried in this (The Analysis of Assessment Data in your school) thread, and my reading of this is that in 2010 the answer was everybody does 2 weeks analysis in excel, or pays for a 3rd party add on.
Unrelated question: Is it bad form to cross-post this to the DM group?
SIMS released something called Discover which gives a nice analysis of results from Assessment Manager. I've also played with their analysis tools in the assessment menu but found that the tools are very old and difficult to get to grips with, it feels like Capita have sort of forgotten about them since they rarely get mentioned now Discover has overshadowed them (didn't stop me bugging a sales rep about them at BETT though, I think he was a bit surprised someone asked about them ).
I think the answer is that most people find themselves breaking out and creating their own custom analyses. I don't think any system is as yet that independent and flexible to be able to do what each individual user requires.
The closest i think you could get and this is mentioned in the DM threads, is using the newer versions of SQL and the business intelligence areas, which so far i've heard of many people doing successfully. But it would give maximum flexibility in accessing your data, and it still being live and direct from your source DB.
With SIMS - Discover is doing something similar but with certain limitations.