NLCS is currently adaptingits use of Engage, to use the system more effectively. There are several projects running simultaneously to develop it in a host of different ways including the use of the activities module, critical reflection, reflective comments from students and integration to third party software.
“At NLCS, Engage is used extensively for reporting, performance evaluation and tracking. There’s a lot of bespoke reporting that we do, some of it’s done in-house by us, some of it is through reports with Double First, but we do tend to extend it and use a lot of data reporting. We also make extensive use of additional information fields to tailor things like admissions processes.
“Engage is a flexible system that can be tailored to the needs of any curriculum. For example, with IB, it’s editing your curriculum structure to make room for the higher and standard level classes that can be taught together, as well as separately. Engage allows you to conduct reflective commentary with students, whether it be progress based or evaluation of units. The activities module is used for managing CAS (creativity, action and service) units as well, so it’s perfectly customisable to meet the needs of an IB school.
“One of the key things that I’ve always found about Double First is when the system doesn’t necessarily do something that you would want it to or there’s something you want to change then people are open to developments. It’s an evolving system; it evolves according to the needs and wants of the customer base, which is what you want with any product really.
“I find that having a geographic support base, which in our case is Singapore, is very useful because when issues come up there’s always someone to help and assist. The biggest thing about Double First as a company is their willingness to listen and develop the product according to what schools need, whether it’s through Share Ideas or at the User Group or making contact with the team – it does get done. I’d have to say, I’ve worked with other MIS systems and not all companies do this, so Double First are somewhat unique in their approach; the flexibility they offer the client, and their willingness to incorporate new ideas into their products.
“No matter who’s looking to get Engage, no matter where they are, our door is open as a school if anyone wants to get a feel for it, have a trial run or even wants to visit as part of their due diligence. Our door is always open to anybody who wants to know more.”