Brittney Burns – Staff Writer
In hopes of helping parents keep track of their student’s progress throughout the year, Macon County Schools offers an online portal and mobile app to track grades, lunch accounts, and more.
“In August 2014, Macon County Schools rolled out the PowerSchool Parent and Student Portal,” said Macon County Schools Dr. Chris Baldwin. “The portal allows both parents and students to access real-time student data such as demographic information, grades, attendance, teacher comments, alerts, school announcements.”
Home Base helps keep everyone connected and informed about what is happening in the classroom. Students can keep up with assignments, parents can track their child’s progress, and teachers can more easily share information about student progress with parents and students.
Using a single log-in, families with multiple students have the ability to set up their accounts to view all of their students at one time. Access to the parent portal is currently available for students of all grade levels, but it is most beneficial to students in grades 3-12.
Dr. Baldwin noted that the portal is accessible via the PowerSchool Mobile app, which is available for both Android and Apple IOS devices, or through any web browser via a link which is posted on the “Resources” menu, under both Parent Resources and Student Resources on the Macon County Schools website (www.macon.k12.nc.us).
“This resource gives parents immediate access to current information about their child,” said Dr. Baldwin. “The response to this resource has been overwhelmingly positive from parents.”
East Franklin Assistant Principal Becky Montgomery said that the portal has been helpful for parents who don’t want surprises during report card time. At East Franklin Elementary, the portal is available for third and fourth grade parents.
“Parent portal is a wonderful tool that allows parents to stay informed of their child’s grades by simply logging onto the system,” said Montgomery. “We at EFS encourage all of our parents to use this portal rather than risk being surprised when their child’s progress reports or report cards are sent home.”
Parents can use the portal to do everything from track grades to add money to a student’s lunch account.
“I always use the parental portal,” said Macon County parent Maylinda Myers Caiata. “It’s great to know how your child is doing academically throughout the year rather than waiting on the progress reports/report cards. Being able to monitor the progress in between allows parents to encourage their child to be proactive rather than reactive.”
“I use it and I love it,” said Macon County parent Angie Bryson Stone. “I like being able to keep up through the grading period. No surprises at report card time.”
To sign up for the Home Base Parent Portal, parents must complete an access request form and submit it to the child’s school in person. After processing the request form, school officials will provide parents with a letter that includes information on how to access the portal and the student’s access ID and password. Once that is completed, parents can create an account online to set up the parent portal.