BRAWLEY — More changes are popping up at Brawley Elementary School District with online-only registration for the 2019–2020 school year starting this week.
For decades, parents signed paperwork in order to register their children. Janet Ponce, who has children at Miguel Hidalgo Elementary School, said that she is not a fan of doing the usual registration paperwork.
“Every year I dread the paperwork and wait until the last minute,” said Ponce. “This is a better way to register and it’s a great way to just get it over with.”
BESD IT Coordinator Victor Ramirez said the district has been pushing technology forward for the past few years to modernize the district. BESD wanted to streamline the registration process and cut down on required paperwork. Thanks to new parental accounts, there will be no need to fill out registration papers every year; the information will carry over.
“That is part of our vision now, being able to move forward,” said Ramirez. “Being where we need to be, making sure the students have the most up-to-,date technology.”
This year, parents will create an online account on the BESD website, then can registration their children online. A physical copy of the information and proof of residency must be taken to school.
The district has been holding workshops for the past two weeks in order to set up parent accounts necessary to register students. Ramirez said the district is trying to help families as much as possible with the transition.
“This is a good thing since one, we don’t need to kill more trees, two, we need to make sure we are modern and giving the community all the technology and resources they should have, and three, we will get information we previously didn’t have and be able to communicate with our community,” said Ramirez.
Support will be provided at each site until the beginning of school for those who are having trouble registering according.
BESD Superintendent Dr. Richard Rundhaug said that this will be a good thing for the district. He added that the move is toward removing barriers and being transparent with the community
“There are plenty of reasons why it needs to change,” said Rundhaug. “It’s a transition period, but in the end, will be better for the students in the long run.”
Rundhaug said the lack of technology updates is actually very common in the education sphere. According to Rundhaug, education still has the most paperwork and stays very traditional.
Many parents, like Ponce, were more than happy that BESD is moving to digital registration.
I love it. If it’s not going to have me sit out at my table for two hours and make me fill out paperwork,” said Esmeralda Nunez. “At least this way, I don’t have to ask for a day off from work.”
Tina Gonzalez said she is happy with the new system and is glad to know she can check on her son’s progress with the online account she created Wednesday.
For some, it is not easy, especially for individuals who might not be as tech-savvy as others. Some parents said it was a hassle because the district did not fully communicate with the parents.
“We’ll see how it goes, but it was too quick,” said one parent. “There was no notice and not much of a warning.”
Rundhaug did state that letters and emails were sent to families to warn them of the impending changes on the horizon before registration started.
Registration for all Brawley schools is currently open.