When the San Jose Unified School District rolled out its new Web-based student-information system, teenagers in the 32,700-student California district immediately noticed some shortcomings. For one, they no longer could view their current grades for all their classes at one glance.
Instead of settling for the seemingly difficult interface, Daniel Brooks, then a senior at Pioneer High School, came up with a Silicon Valley-style fix: He developed an iPhone app.
Then he got Apple’s approval to hawk it on the App Store, handed out hundreds of fliers, and now has 2,300 users who downloaded it across the country.
“It ended up on every iPhone and iPad and portable device that any student and teacher had on campus,” says Scott Peterson, a Pioneer High English teacher who doubles as the school’s technology-support person.
But Brooks did not get the response he expected from the company whose technology he worked to improve.
Eric Creighton, the chief operating officer of Infinite Campus, the company that provided the student-information system, says the company wanted Brooks to make clear that he wasn’t offering an official Infinite Campus app. The company doesn’t outsource software development, Creighton says, and was planning to release its own free iPhone app.
A version of this article appeared in the October 19, 2011 edition of Digital Directions as San Jose Student Writes App to View Grades