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Support

Welcome to DecisionInsite Support

Support is the place to start for answers, documentation, and training. Our team is eager to assist you. Plus there is never any fee for system support or training with DecisionInsite. If you have a question, please let us know.

New client? Start here.

FAQs

Get quick answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. Don't see your question here? Feel free to contact us directly.

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Documentation

New with us or need a quick refresher? View our setup documentation for submitting school files, student data, boundaries, and more.

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Training

Schedule a free online training with one of our StudentView specialists. Individual or group trainings are available weekly.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Click on a question below to view its answer

How much do DecisionInsite’s solutions cost?+-

All of our solutions are designed to meet the needs of each school district. From small school districts with student populations of just over 800 students to large urban school districts with student populations over 200,000 students, our solutions are based upon the size and scope of the work.

What kind of software infrastructure must a client manage?+-

None! This is the beauty of StudentView. There is nothing for the client to manage, no software to keep up with or information to back up. This is all part of the DecisionInsite service and why school districts partner with us. Clients simply log in and explore. And, don’t worry about anyone harming the data, it’s all protected on our secured servers.

How many users are included in a typical DecisionInsite agreement?+-

DecisionInsite believes that a district gains its best value by granting access to as many people as necessary. Therefore we do not limit the number of users.

Where does DecisionInsite get its information?+-

Data from our clients is central to the enrollment projections we provide. Student data originates from the Districts’ student information system and is transmitted to DecisionInsite via a secure file transfer protocol (SFTP) or by secure upload. DecisionInsite licenses demographic data sources and the source of those data is the US Census Bureau, Experian, Epsilon and other proprietary data vendors.

How does DecisionInsite generate its enrollment forecasts?+-

DecisionInsite’s proprietary methodology offers school districts unique advantages and benefits. To learn more, please download our whitepaper.

When and how often does DecisionInsite generate enrollment forecasts?+-

In September, existing clients are notified that the annual forecasting process is beginning. Information and data requirements are provided to each client. As soon as a district submits its annual student data file, DecisionInsite begins work on their forecasts. DecisionInsite can create enrollment forecasts at any point during the year, upon request.

Why does DecisionInsite generate two student enrollment forecasts each year for its clients?+-

We generate two student enrollments for our clients as they serve different purposes within a district. The conservative projection is designed with budget planning specifically in mind. The moderate projection is suitable for facilities planning. Many districts find they need both of these and, in some cases, different departments are creating their own projections. DecisionInsite feels that it best serves the whole district by generating both and making them available for analysis through StudentView.

How much interaction is there between client districts and DecisionInsite during the enrollment forecasting process?+-

DecisionInsite communicates with clients throughout the forecasting process. The first step is to understand the current state of the district via an annual questionnaire. This brief form is the primary way to quickly and easily communicate changes that could impact the enrollment forecast. Next one of DecisionInsite’s projection analysts will produce the initial forecasts. If at any point during the process the analyst has questions, they will communicate with the district. Once the initial forecasts are completed they are made available via StudentView for district review. We encourage all districts to actively participate in the review and feedback process. If there is something that raises a question or needs modification, the analyst will work with the district to make those changes. Ultimately the goal is to understand any concerns and/or properly account for new information. Once all concerns have been addressed and any new information accounted for, the final report is produced and made available for download in StudentView.

How does DecisionInsite handle school choice in its school-by-grade forecasts?+-

DecisionInsite’s methodology was specifically designed to handle the challenges of projecting school enrollment where school choice is practiced. We do not base school projections on attendance areas. Instead, we base school projections upon the pattern of draw to a particular school from any geographic area‚ both inside the district and outside the district. This method is not only more realistic to what actually occurs in a district but also gives our clients the flexibility of closing a school to open enrollment when necessary. There are also reports and analysis tools built into StudentView which allow the user to quickly see the patterns of school choice as they are expressed within the district.

What if residential development is occurring within a district? How does DecisionInsite handle this?+-

In order to realistically consider the potential impact upon a district of new residential development, DecisionInsite needs to know the amount of dwelling units by housing type and year of expected occupancy. Armed with this information, we are able to apply a student generation rate and project new students in the appropriate year. Some districts have the internal staff to conduct residential development research. When this is the case, they simply pass that information along and it is built into the forecasts. For districts that do not have this internal capacity, DecisionInsite can provide these research services for an additional fee.

How difficult is it to conduct alternative attendance area analysis in order to either open or close schools?+-

With StudentView, alternative scenarios are only a few mouse clicks away. Our unique boundary analysis tool allows district planners to easily generate multiple attendance area scenarios in a matter of minutes. With this powerful tool, planners not only see how many students might be generated in a new attendance area, but also immediately see the potential impact upon existing schools in both the immediate future and future years. What used to take hours is done in seconds!

Documentation

Download appendices and sample data files related to submitting district and student related data to us.

District Data

Get specs and format requirements for School Files, School & District Boundary Maps, and Proposed Residential Development.

Download Appendix A

Download Sample School File

Download Sample ResDev File

Student Data

Get specs for and format requirements for Student Data Files. This applies to the Annual Fall Snapshot Files, Current Files, and SFTP Files.

Download Appendix B

Download Sample Student Data File

New Client

We are so grateful for the opportunity to work with your district. To help get you started, we`ve provided step-by-step instructions for setting up all the necessary elements in StudentView. Depending on your district`s needs, some of the topics below may or may not apply.
If at any point you have questions or issues, please don`t hesitate to contact us. We are here to help!

The Set-Up Process

  1. Provide Key Contacts: These are the people in your district who will be responsible for completing the following steps. We use this information to provide assistance and to grant system access. Specific instructions for each person responsible for the tasks below will be emailed upon receipt of Key Contacts. We will need the following key contacts: the primary contact, an alternate contact, the school data contact, the student data contact, the district maps contact, the residential development contact, and the enrollment projections contact. Email these key contacts to production@decisioninsite.com

  2. Upload School File: We need information on each school in the district (with some exceptions). Specs and format requirements along with upload instructions can be found in our Appendix A documentation. A sample file with all the correct headers is also available to assist you. Download Appendix A (view a sample school file here). *Note: you must upload a school file before you can upload any student data!

  3. Provide Boundary Maps: We need accurate boundary maps for both the district boundary and all schools with an attendance area boundary.

    • Option A: If the attendance boundaries have been uploaded to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) database, we will automatically apply those.
    • Option B: If the attendance boundaries are NOT found in the NCES database, please send us either: a) the digital shape files (consisting of four files as found in a GIS system) if you have them, or b) accurate street maps (PDF or JPG format) showing clear and precise boundaries for elementary, middle, and high schools in your district.

    Email shape files, PDFs, or JPGs to production@decisioninsite.com

  4. Upload Student Data Files: We need information on all actively enrolled students in the district (with some exceptions). Specs and format requirements along with upload instructions can be found in our Appendix B documentation. A sample file with all the correct headers is also available to assist you. Download Appendix B (view a sample student data file here). *Note: If creating files to be used for projection purposes, Fall snapshots of students actively enrolled at a school in your district are required. We need one file for the current year and 3 preceeding years (total of 4 files). Year must refer to the Fall of that school year (e.g., 2017 is for the 2017-18 school year; 2018 is for the 2018-19 school year).

  5. Provide Residential Development Data: If residential development is being proposed in your district and you are NOT contracting with us to conduct residential research, please provide the data using the Sample ResDev File below. If you are contracting with us to conduct residential research, please email us any information you already have on residential development in your district that you would like us to consider. Download our Sample Residential Development File. Mail the completed ResDev file or any additional information to production@decisioninsite.com

Schedule an Online Training

Trainings typically last 30-45 minutes and are conducted via the web. Use the form below to request a
training. Standard training days and times are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9am-1pm PST.

Request a Training

Give us a call today at 877 204-1392

We'd love to talk more about your district's needs.