Friday 30 November 2012


Our last paying PF5 customer recently moved into edge and finally put PF5 to rest. There was a wake at the office yesterday morning to recognise the end of an era. We had a few old faces stop by, few words were spoken - things sure have changed. Thankfully, we have employees that did not know what PF5 was but were able to appreciate the work and the history that has lead us to where we are today.

Million dollar question is how long will it take before the last Classic customer moves into edge? How long should it take?

So long PF5. Gone, but not forgotten. RIP.

Monday 20 August 2012

Kidz @ the Centre

Was great to be back in New Plymouth last week at the Taranaki Secondary Schools boutique AP DP conference. I caught up with my old teachers from the great FDMC, reminisced about my school days and then listened in on challenging and enriching presentations.

Topics included brain development, society changes and technology - and suitably wrapped up by Massey University VC - Steve Maharey. What is now known about the human brain, that wasn't known even as recently as 5 years ago coupled with the possibilities modern technology provides for more personalised learning, all point to significant change for New Zealand schooling. Not everyone is excited about change - many find it daunting if not outright frightening. But we are in the middle (or maybe just the start of) a huge revolution and there will be a lot of change.

MUSAC contributes to a number of conferences each year (and in turn we get a lot back to push into development). What I've sensed this year is a lot of excitement and positivity in schools for students and their learning. Sure there are issues and massive amounts of hard work, but fundamentally the teachers, Principals, senior managers, students and BoTs I've spoken with are excited and positive about the future. The Taranaki APs and DPs were no exception in that regard.

It has been said that one should avoid live demonstrations involving small children, animals and technology. With this in mind I prepared more vigilantly for my short presentation to the group - did an extra run through the night previous, checked everything the morning of ... only to have my MacBook not recognise the data show moments before I was ready to go on and then have the wireless network play up after swapping out laptops. I was smiling on the inside, doing a poor job of it on the outside but managed to demonstrate the Classic Web Portals and describe Edge - our cloud based student management system.

Monday 30 July 2012

More out-of-the-box

It has never been more important to be on top of your assessment data. We're not talking National Standards or League tables, we're talking good formative assessment data to guide and inform classroom practice.

Therefore MUSAC, in conjunction with Solutions and Services, and Edtech, have come together to conceptualise the ultimate in school assessment data capability. Designed by teachers and practitioners, these tools are being incorporated into MUSAC and will be made available FREE. Menu driven, these tools expose the power of MUSAC Classic with ready to use entry and analysis capability, quickly and easily.

The first version will be available in our 12.8 release of Classic and include National Assessments, NCEA, student and career profiles from Year 1 right through to Year 13.

Many schools have had customisation and Student Achievement Packs provided through both Edtech and Solutions and Services. The new tools will compliment these approaches providing more capability out-of-the-box. We also know that while some schools will be comfortable with running with the tools as they are, others have more unique and individual needs - just like your students. The Solutions and Services, and Edtech Agents you know and trust will still be there to provide that for you giving you the best of both worlds.

Keep an eye out for updates in your inbox.

Monday 14 May 2012

Classic Web Portals Rolling Out

We've completed the main development of our web portals for our Classic product suite and have now moved into wide scale deployment making these available for all customers.

To date the major benefit has been teacher entry of attendance data with many teachers using their favourite smart phone (BYOD). The developers have optimised the attendance entry screen to work with any smart device. The teacher portal has also been released, with report comment entry and ability to view mark books and core student data. The full power of Classic is still best served through the main application, but routine tasks and looking up of basic information can now be done by teachers from anywhere* using any device.

Still waiting the first school (other than Mt Aspiring and Logan Park High School) to push out the parent and student access providing attendance, financial (just for the parents), timetable, NCEA and on-line reports for download. We've made it easy for schools to manage parent and student logins and remove the worry of managing passwords whilst maintaining security and control over access.

For more information contact us directly toll free on 0800 600 159.

Monday 19 March 2012

Three things from MUSAC for Term 1

The three biggies from MUSAC for Term 1:
  1. Support
  2. Classic Web Portals
  3. Edge
  • We're running free seminars nationwide each term. We come to your region. Any topics you'd like covered for Term 2 or if you'd like to host the seminar please let us know.
  • MUSAC Agents are delivering more out of the box features and functions to support NCEA and National Standards
  • We'll be attending all the usual annual teacher and management conferences to showcase our new developments. Stop by to learn how your school can benefit from them and provide feedback.
Classic Web Portals
These are web interfaces into MUSAC Classic. Enables web access for teachers to mark attendance from their favourite Internet connected device, view financial, pastoral and enrolment information. Next release will contain curriculum information and then finally the ability to enter report comments. Other parts for rollout Term 1 are student and parent access. In Term 2 we'll add VENIM for identity management out of MUSAC.

Our cloud based student management system has been named and branded. We will be promoting Edge through the year. Contact us now to find out more.

Thursday 26 January 2012

It's good to be back

Rest and relaxation with family and friends over the Christmas break is almost a distant memory. The team here at MUSAC starting rolling back on the 4th of January, support line opened on the 9th of January and we've now released updates to our web product, Classic and commenced roll out of the Classic Web Portals. Updates to Library and Financial Manager are imminent, and Phil and Ngaire are currently at Learning@School in Hamilton.

We are excited about 2012 with the formal release of our web product, the introduction of the Classic Web Portals and VENIM into the MUSAC product suite. The latter are being rolled out in limited release so we can meet demands - the portals themselves were tested in schools in 2011.

Following the popularity of the free MUSAC seminars in 2011, we're going to expand on these in 2012 - larger centres every term, smaller centres every second term and more remote places might just be the oncer. To keep costs down we'll be in touch to secure a host school in the region and we'll have Term 1 visits locked in and up on the website as soon as we can in February.

MUSAC Agents Edtech and Solutions and Services are also out in schools helping get the year started. Edtech and Solutions and Services have been working on ClassRoom Manager customisations with both having extensive Primary and Secondary graphing, analysis and aggregation capabilities. The key, obviously, is the conversation with the school about individual school goals and targets and ensuring staff are familiar and know how to use the functionality.

Boards will be wanting analysis of variance reports - MUSAC Agents can provide assistance if this is currently a chore.

Enough from me. It is good to be back. We're excited and energised about 2012 and look forward to continuing to be of service, meeting and discussing your ever changing needs and requirements.