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Our client is responsible for the delivery of education to over 12,000 students across more than 20 schools and employees more than 2,200 staff through.
Their core objective is to provide quality education, encompassing various aspects of a student’s development, such as intellectual, social, emotional, and spiritual growth.

The Challenge

As part of our client’s educational processes, they independently test their students twice a year from prep to year 2. This process was run out of multiple in-house developed forms across multiple systems and had a substantial amount of manual intervention. Our client approached Antares to discuss the development of a solution that would allow the automation and streamlining of this process.

Starting with Google Forms, exporting to excel, and then importing to another third-party software for reporting, led to an inconsistent collection of data across the schools as each school had its own forms. Other concerning factors included duplicate answers, lack of controls, restrictions, governance, and data storage leading to high risk of errors throughout the entire process.

Our client was looking for a solution that would guide teachers and students through a number of questions and answers to determine the literacy and numeracy skills of the students from Prep to Year 2 using the same test and criteria for reporting.

The Solution

As our client wanted to further utilise their existing ecosystem, Antares proposed a solution on Microsoft technologies leveraging PowerApps and SharePoint Modern platform. Antares utilised its proven methodology to deliver a solution that provided data integrity, consistency across schools and ease of use for both teachers and students.
Our team of experts were able to have a complete understanding of the needs of the diocese by validating existing requirements and building out prototypes through multiple workshops. This allowed for our client to review and provide feedback so adjustments could be made to the design.

The Early Years testing solution contains four different forms, all built on PowerApps. Prep and Year1  tests are completed by teachers on behalf of the students, whilst Year 2 is completed by the students. Therefore, a key part of the design for the Prep and Year 1 tests focused on the teacher’s user experience, whilst for the Year 2 tests we focused on the end user experience of the students.

The final design is simplistic yet intuitive, so the students do not get distracted when taking the test and each of the tests simply differ by the question being asked. The four tests included in the solution are:

  • Prep Test
  • Year1 Test
  • Year2 Numeracy Test
  • Year2 Literacy Test

The tests pages have been designed with a wizard-style approach, asking one question per page to give teachers and students significant ease-of-use.  Once the student has finished the test all data is presented through Power BI reports that show students’ progress over the early years of their schooling.

The Results

Our client is now on a more secure and flexible platform with much greater capability and features. Both staff and students are seeing the benefits of the streamlined process when taking the tests. The benefits of consistent data and reporting will be realised when the second round of tests are completed at the end of the year.

Beyond this project, Antares are continuing to help the Diocese with the benefits of the Microsoft ecosystem throughout the diocese.