7 Open-source School Management Solutions with Virtual Classroom Support


It's still uncertain for many countries if the school will reopen for the current season. COVID-19 cases are increasing in several countries like Japan, some countries at the European Union and Turkey.

However, remote education has proven to be the current valid alternative for education in such an uncertain state. But in Turkey as an example, they have called-in the teachers to schools for planning and organizing the educational season.

Therefore we decided to write this article to offer an open-source solution for school and virtual classroom management.

Photo by Julia M Cameron from Pexels
Photo by Julia M Cameron from Pexels

Importance of remote education systems during the epidemic

  1. Limit direct interaction/ contact and personal interactions
  2. Remote distance is better than the social distance
  3. Provide useful management tools like reporting and personal management
  4. Support remote students management
  5. Virtual and online classroom management support

Here in Medevel.com we published few open-source software listings to support remote learning and tele-education during the epidemic, here is our list:

  1. 14 Open-source Self-hosted Learning Management Systems (LMS)
  2. Top 6 Free and Open Source Video Conferencing Solutions for Education
  3. Top 15 Open source Video conference and Team Communication Solutions for Windows, Linux, Mac OSX and Phones
  4. Revolutionize your Virtual Classrooms with BigBlueButton
  5. OpenBoard: The Ultimate Open source Free Whiteboard Solution for Classrooms

Why using an open-source system?

  1. Cost-efficient (Open-source)
  2. Community support
  3. Better control over the system in term of data and system security
  4. Self-hosted systems help the facility to avoid vendor lock-in and ensure privacy.

In this article, we will focus on open-source school management solutions with the aim to make the list available for everyone. We will select only the complete open-source ones with the solid feature list.

Note that we will not list the web-based limited edition or commercial solution on this list. Also, we will focus here on the school management systems not specialized virtual classroom management solutions as that's totally another story.

Open-source school management system with remote education support:

1-  openSIS

The openSIS e-Learning System is our top pick as a school management system because it has everything: custom builds fr K-12 schools, custom solution for trade and high schools, and online virtual school setup with advanced virtual classroom management.

openSIS offers a custom version for healthcare facilities aiming for patient education.

openSIS Student's profile (src. openSIS)
openSIS Student's profile (src. openSIS)

It is a completely free and open-source self-hosted cloud solution. It offers a community edition "openSIS CE" a lightweight version that contains all the functionalities and "openSIS Pro" an extended version built on top of the community edition.

openSIS is suitable for:

  1. Formal schools
  2. Informal schools
  3. Private schools
  4. Online schools
  5. K-12 schools
  6. Patient's education
  7. Trade schools

Features:

  1. Student and parent portal
  2. Teacher portal
  3. Self-hosted
  4. Student and Staff Demographics
  5. Multiple language support
  6. Reporting
  7. Email messaging
  8. Scheduling
  9. Transcripts manager
  10. Virtual classroom
  11. Report card
  12. Transcripts
  13. Parents portal
  14. Grade-book management
  15. Health records
  16. School Calendars
  17. Built-in messaging system

We didn't list all of the features so make sure you check them all at openSIS official website.

Download openSIS Community Edition

2- Fenda

Fenda School Management System
Fenda School Management System

Fenda is a popular free and open-source school management package. It provides complete management and educational workflows. Currently, Fenda runs in 15000+ schools and services 7 million+ students.

The current version of Fenda is bundled with GPA/ CWA and CCE grading systems as it offers many useful features with multi-lingual support which makes it fit to manage schools in the EU and USA.

Fenda is a self-hosted cloud system, it's easy to install and configure as it also does not require a steep learning curve to get it ready to manage the facility.

It's  also a modular system with a plugin architecture and a rich plugin directory. It offers free and pro paid modules that extend its functionality.

Fenda is suitable for:

  1. Schools with GPA/ CWA or CCE systems
  2. Online schools
  3. Formal and informal schools

Features:

  1. Open-source
  2. Self-hosted
  3. Multiple language supported
  4. Multiple grading system options (GPA/CWA/CCE)
  5. Many plugins to extend it's functionalities
  6. Students records
  7. Educational workflow management
  8. Students portal
  9. Admission management
  10. Exams management
  11. Timetable management
  12. Attendance manager
  13. Parents portal
  14. Online and virtual classroom support
  15. Customized dashboard
  16. Library management system
  17. Google documents integration
  18. Google SSO "Single Sign-On"
  19. Discipline manager

3- RosarioSIS

RosarioSIS is a student information system that backed with a powerful school management solution. It's a web-based with a responsive design that works on mobile and tablets.

RosarioSIS (src RosarioSIS GitHub)
RosarioSIS (src RosarioSIS GitHub)

The system supports many languages like French, German, Khmer and Bulgarian. It also supports RTL languages like Arabic and Persian languages.

RosarioSIS offers a full Moodle integration, accounting and billing system and advanced reporting tools.

Features:

  1. Multi-device support
  2. Multi-languages support
  3. RTL-languages support
  4. Reports generation
  5. Full Moodle integration
  6. Add-ons support
  7. Accounting management
  8. Scheduling management
  9. Grades management
  10. Attendance
  11. Student activities
  12. Food service management
  13. Data Import/ Export that supports multiple formats

4- Gibbon

Gibbon in action

Gibbon is a completely free student information system with a student-centered approach.  It provides complete lessons/student management system.

Gibbon focuses on student privacy and records management as it also offers many discipline and activity tools to improve the educational process.

Virtual classroom management is an essential part of Gibbon which makes it the best option for remote classroom management.

Features:

  1. Complete (libre) open-source
  2. Virtual classroom manager
  3. Student records management
  4. Multiple languages support
  5. Multiple assessment options
  6. Extensible
  7. Developer-friendly
  8. Students profiling

5- Unifiedtransform

Unifiedtransform

Unifiedtransform is a fairly new school management system built on modern web technologies and frameworks. It supports payment through Stripe which makes it suitable for private schools or academies in the US and the EU.

Unlike most of the solutions on this list, It only supports two languages: English and Spanish.

Unifiedtransform


Features:

  1. Open-source
  2. Actively developed
  3. Notice and Syllabus management
  4. Library management
  5. Accounting
  6. Student discipline tools
  7. Grade management
  8. Import/ Export options
  9. Payment management (Stripe)
  10. Messaging
  11. Complete student profiling

6- Open School Community Edition (PHP OpenSchool)

The Open-school system is an enterprise feature-rich web-based school management solution. It offers two editions an enterprise commercial edition and a free open-source community edition.

Introduction to Open-school

With a fancy user-interface and set of management and system tools, Open School Community edition proven to be a good option for formal schools and small academic institutions.

Open School

Features:

  1. Students management
  2. Teachers management
  3. Parents information system
  4. Courses management
  5. Semesters manager
  6. Academic promotion system
  7. Grading manager
  8. Students and teachers logs
  9. School events manager
  10. Students and teacher attendance tracker  
  11. Employees manager
  12. Reports and statistics
  13. Examination manager
  14. Import and export manager
  15. Student transport management
  16. Library manager
  17. Hostel management

7- openEduCat: A School ERP System

OpenEduCat is a comprehensive school/ student management system or you may call it the school ERP "Enterprise Resource Planning" system. It's considered an ERP because it's based on Odoo ERP.

OpenEduCat is available to download for Windows, Linux (Debian and Red Hat Linux).

While it's rich in plugins and extensions, it's not really cheap when it comes to using it commercially or use non-free extensions. In fact, it may cost thousands of dollars to get it up and running with the necessary modules even though it's an open-source system. However, it's a suitable solution for private schools.

Features

  1. School Management
  2. Accounting management
  3. Payroll management
  4. Students management
  5. Courses manager
  6. Enrollment
  7. Exams
  8. Virtual Classroom manager
  9. Library manager
  10. School events manager
  11. Reports manager
  12. Messaging portal
  13. News portal
  14. Poll and survey manager
  15. Expanses manager
  16. Integration with Zoom, BigBlueButton, Jitsi and Skype Meet.
  17. Data import and export
  18. Complete integration with Google Apps
  19. Campus management
  20. Canteen manager
  21. Students transportation manager
  22. Homework and assignment manager

Conclusion

Here ends our list. Though we choose the best performing and features packed open-source free systems, we believe there are other alternatives out there. So if you think any of them deserve to go on this list, please drop us a message.






Hamza Mu Author: Hamza Mu

A physician with programming skills, Linux user since late 1990s, Open source supporter. Coding with Python, NodeJS (Meteor, VueJS, Express, D3, PhantomJS), SmallTalk & R language.





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