There is an app for that: Application lets parents check on grades, other aspects

Published 12:04 pm Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Albert Lea  Superintendent Mike Funk. – Sarah Stultz  and Kathy Johnson/Albert Lea Tribune

Albert Lea
Superintendent Mike Funk. – Sarah Stultz
and Kathy Johnson/Albert Lea Tribune

Parents of students in Albert Lea Area Schools have more opportunity than ever before to stay up-to-date on their child’s academics.

When the district updated its student management system two years ago, that system came with several benefits, including a mobile application parents can download on their iPads, iPhones and Android phones, said Superintendent Mike Funk.

Called ParentVUE, the app allows parents to check on aspects of their child’s education, such as grades and attendance, at any time they choose.

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“I personally think it’s a great tool to help parents become more aware of what’s happening in their son or daughter’s lives,” Funk said.

As a parent himself, Funk said he uses the app, and he likes how it is a more immediate way of finding out information.

“It’s really impacting how we communicate with our parents,” he said.

Reid Ulve, director of computer information, said though he is unsure of the exact number of parents who use the app, he knows most of the parents of middle-schoolers and high-schoolers are using it.

“It’s growing in popularity,” Funk said.

Finance Director Lori Volz said the initial cost for the district’s software upgrade — of which the ParentVUE app is a part — cost about $90,000. Each year after, there is an annual support fee of almost $22,000.

In addition to the mobile app, the software gives the district the ability to send out emergency messages, notify parents of school closings and let parents know when they need to put money in their child’s lunch account. The changes came as the school district updated its website and Facebook page.

Parents interesting in signing up for the app can contact Ulve at 379-4815 or to set up a login.