AWS Government, Education, & Nonprofits Blog

Frontline Debuts New Skill at ISTE 2018 Leveraging Education Data

School district administrators deal with several daily questions: How many substitutes did my district have yesterday? What was the number of lost educational hours resulting from absences? How many open positions must be filled in my district?

With AWS and Amazon Alexa, Frontline Education is able to serve the answers to these questions and more. The new Frontline skill provides easy, on-demand access to critical data and actionable insights. Through Alexa-enabled devices, education leaders can interact with data to make informed decisions about their organizations on topics ranging from attracting, engaging, growing and retaining educators to managing day-to-day operations like absences and substitute teacher fill rates.

How does it work?

Frontline is using AWS Lambda functions to aggregate data in a hybrid environment. AWS API Gateway provides the REST API interface to securely surface that data when a user simply asks Alexa. Currently, the three applications powering this solution are:

  1. Frontline Identity Management – The underlying IDM platform utilized for all Frontline solutions. It is entirely hosted in AWS as a series of .NET microservices with MSSQL.
  2. Frontline Absence & Time – Frontline’s absence management solution.
  3. Frontline Recruiting & Hiring – Frontline’s solution to manage employee recruiting and hiring for educational organizations

The new Frontline skill for Alexa-enabled devices will continue to evolve with more key insights and functionality, including predictive artificial intelligence capabilities to support the K-12 education community with a focus on professional growth and support for individual educators.

“This is an exciting project for us, combining our love of technology and innovation with something truly useful and valuable to our customers,” said Bo Motlagh, Enterprise Architect for Frontline Education. “The services at our disposal with AWS make this not only possible, but rapidly attainable. This is only the beginning.”

See a demo at ISTE 2018

A pilot program with several school districts is already underway. Participating districts are able to request District Flash Briefings from an Alexa-enabled device. Instantly, Alexa provides real-time updates on key performance indicators from teacher fill rates and application status to professional development and evaluation management data. Additionally, Alexa may be prompted to provide comparative metrics regionally, as well as statewide or nationwide.

Frontline Education is unveiling the new technology at ISTE 2018 in Chicago. See a demo at booth 1880!