Stay in the Loop With the New School Loop

Stay in the Loop With the New School Loop

Blackboard, the program that Miramonte used last year and School Loop, the current program, are shown.

Sofia Marinac and Courtney Attard, Staff Writers

This school year, Miramonte has switched its student-teacher information sharing site from Blackboard to School Loop.
The upgrade to School Loop is based on various problems with Blackboard. “It was a finicky program that went down a lot. It wasn’t very user friendly,” Principal Adam Clark said.
Colleges that use Blackboard are successful with it because they have full time staff who work with the program. Miramonte didn’t have the resources to continuously work with the program, which resulted in frequent system failures. The only benefit of the system was that teachers could give exams and keep assignments on Blackboard.
On School Loop, all of the students’ classes, assignments, and grades are easily accessible. Some students have shown discomfort with the openness of School Loop’s grade display, however, Clark said, “We want parents to be in the loop.” According to Clark, Miramonte’s goal is for students to be the best they can be, and having access to grades is a good way to accomplish that. Parental involvement benefits students’ time management and work ethic.
Many students found Blackboard difficult to use as well.
“I didn’t really like the layout of Blackboard. School Loop is easier to check my grades and assignments because my teachers use it more,” junior Andrew Furtado said.
Blackboard is a complex system, so it was neglected by many teachers. However, all teachers use and update School Loop more often. English teacher Donia Gousios has coined her own clever and catchy name for School Loop – Schloop (pronounced Shloop). “Schloop is fun, I love the calendar. Overall the whole package is easier, that’s for sure,” Gousious said. “But I do miss Blackboard; I had a lot of fun putting up really cool graphics.”
Additionally, Blackboard was very expensive and School Loop is just a fraction of the expense.
“They would have to house the program for Blackboard in our district so it was very expensive. School Loop is like an app so there’s no need to have the program housed in our district,” Clark said.
Blackboard was not always used due to its complications and setbacks.
“The number of people actually using Blackboard was pretty low because it was a little hard to use. Now, all of the teachers are using School Loop and there haven’t been too many complaints,” Clark said.