How Intrinsic Schools uses the Starter Pack

 
Harpreet Gill, Director of Information at Intrinsic Schools

Harpreet Gill, Director of Information at Intrinsic Schools

Hello, Data Viz Starter Pack community! I am Harpreet Gill, Director of Information at Intrinsic Schools. Intrinsic Schools currently operates a 7 - 12th grade school on the Northwest Side of Chicago. We put a focus on team teaching, innovative learning spaces, and technology to help our students succeed.

Intrinsic has a history of building powerful data portals for our team to have access to the information that can help create real change. Over the years we have tried a little bit of everything from manually refreshed Google Sheets to complex full-stack web applications. It was often difficult to find the right balance between powerful, but easy to maintain. Thankfully, we were able to find that with the Data Viz Starter Pack. Having a series of data sets that are always up to date has enabled me to build a full suite of reports in Google Data Studio. I am able to focus on having conversations with the team and building data dashboards without having to worry about extracting, cleaning, and maintaining data across many different platforms. The Data Viz Starter Pack takes care of the messy part letting me get to the real work.

I leverage Google Data Studio to build reports that look at student demographics, attendance, academics, assessment and so much more. When I first started using Data Studio, the missing piece was giving students access to their data. I did not want teachers to be the gatekeepers all the time. I wanted students to have direct access so they could be both informed and goal set appropriately.

Leveraging Google Apps Script, I was able to build a portal for our students. Google Apps Script is a scripting language that is very similar to javascript and allows you to interact with many of Google’s services. There is a script that retrieves the appropriate student data depending on who is logged in and creates a web portal for them, displaying the data that we find is most important.

You can find a sample of our student portal here. This site is really a Google Apps Script, but to the end user it looks like a normal website.

Marcos has taken the script and generalized it a bit should other schools want to create their own portal.

Resources

Sample student portal here. This student portal is pulling data from the Starter Pack’s sample data sets in Google Sheets.

Google Apps Script files for the above portal are located here

Deployment

To deploy this in your organization, make a copy of the source code and review the developer TODOs in the code. When ready to go live, Publish Deploy as web app… will give you a URL that your students will use to access the web portal.

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Harpreet Gill