We founded Spotlight out of some key beliefs, based on observation and experience. These beliefs are, in essence, our operating assumptions: If they're not valid, our core proposition doesn't hold nearly as much value.
Those assumptions include:
- Education data is rarely provided in a way that "everyday users" -- students, parents, teachers, even administrators -- can easily put it to use.
- To be useful, those everyday users need granular data -- say, student-by-student information -- but they also need insights and direction. In other words, the "What?" as well as the "So what?" and the "Now what?"
- Today's busy consumers of data don't have the time or patience to search for data. Just as many of us no longer scan an entire newspaper, but instead receive direct-delivered personalized news feeds, we want education insights to be served to us, and we want it to be personalized.
Check this last assumption: Is this right? We'll express it in specific questions:
- If you're a parent, are you aware of a portal or a dashboard that conveys information about your child? Do you visit that portal?
- Once you've logged into that portal or dashboard, how long do you need to spend there to glean those insights? Do you use drop-downs and filters to find just the right information?
- Teachers, do you feel you have easy access to insights about your students -- and do you make full use of those insights?
- Same question, teachers, if you log into a portal, do you set all the right filters to track down the most useful information about your students?
We welcome the chance to question our assumptions, and to think critically about our approach. So please -- let us know what you think. Shoot your thoughts over to firstname.lastname@example.org. We'd love to hear from you.