CASE STUDY

POWERING PEACE OF MIND IN PULLMAN

Easy-to-use app enhances tracking service data and progress monitoring, ensuring compliance even in a global pandemic.

Searching for streamlined

When Cristina Johnson-Hyde joined Pullman Public Schools as interim Director of Special Services, she immediately went on the hunt for a streamlined way to gather, organize and access the mountains of important tracking, progress monitoring and
compliance data so critical to Special Education services.

Little did she know, when she came across the Athlos Special Education Logs app at a Council for Exceptional Children conference in February 2020, impressed with its potential to fit the district’s needs, how crucial it would become to her team’s
functions when COVID-19 massively disrupted education for all students nationwide.

“When we closed down for the pandemic, it became even more crucial than normal that we have accurate data, and to do it in a way that everyone’s consistently doing it in the same fashion,” Johnson-Hyde said, taking on the Athlos app in beta stage and
working closely with the development team to hone the app’s features to the needs of admins, teachers, and providers.

Implementing with Ease

Even amidst the early days of the pandemic, administrators and teachers found that the Athlos app was an immediate improvement on their existing systems. Training on the app took just an hour or two of online modules in March, deemed easy and efficient by Pullman teachers, who got up to speed very quickly. Now, teachers have embedded time within the workweek to complete documentation, though many track daily because of the speed and simplicity of the process.

“It’s very intuitive,” Johnson-Hyde said. “You put your kids on your case load, you do an activity, you click what goal area
you’re working on, it gives you your narrative and timelines for what you’ve been working on. We are using it consistently
and it’s just a wonderful tracking tool.”

Informing Practice

With Pullman’s emphasis on consistent, meaningful data tracking, the Athlos app has provided an additional avenue to efficiency: paraprofessionals who work with students can also track, allowing
teachers to save time and simply edit and approve that tracking. Beyond tracking for compliance, teachers find the data visibility to be a useful planning tool in their interventions.
“It’s informing our practice and any deficits in what we’re doing if we have to improve,” Johnson-Hyde said. “Really clearly, if they’re doing any academic intervention or any intervention as a whole and we have kids that are not making progress on their goal, then it means we need to do something to change our practice.”

Peace of Mind for Admins and Teachers Alike

“As a whole, it provides a very nice system for us to deliver reporting information on goal progress, minutes served, academic areas or social-emotional or any qualifying area that might not be getting served, with real clear-cut color coding. It gives me a snapshot before I enter a building so I can have a general conversation with case managers and have a feel for what’s going on and why.”

When local or state inquiries into compliance or student services have come in, Johnson-Hyde has been able to quickly and thoroughly address those inquiries with easily accessible reporting from the Athlos app, eliminating a complicated
tangle of administrative tasks and document gathering for Johnson- Hyde’s office, but also for the teachers on the ground.
“If we get those inquiries, I am able to access that information without disturbing their teaching time or what they’re working on because it’s there,“ Johnson-Hyde said. “It’s so nice to have that immediate relief, within the same day” with reporting, Johnson-Hyde said. “There’s no worries! It’s a tool that meets the needs for any inquiries or investigations, and it’s really clean cut. Our lawyers like it, the parents like it, the state likes it. It’s smoothed the way.”

”The Athlos app will remain part of Pullman’s systems long after the pandemic. We implemented it during one of the most stressful times in education history. It became a tool that we’ll keep using.”