Hattiesburg Public School District makes informed student decisions



Nothing is more important to the future than education, but understanding education isn’t easy, especially when you’re looking at an entire district. In this video, Hattiesburg School District Superintendent James Bacchus tells how Tableau helps them “change lives because data means something.”

Tableau: What is the focus of your job?
James Q. Bacchus, Superintendent: Overall, I would say my work is making a difference in children's lives and their families.

Tableau: And how does Tableau fit into that mission?

Tableau has certainly been a key for us as -- we're looking at student data and being able to inform how we can best serve children.

James: Tableau has certainly been a key for us as -- we're looking at student data and being able to inform how we can best serve children.

In all -- it helps us to identify fault lines and situations where we can address the particular needs of not only groups of children, but individual children.

Tableau: What were things like before Tableau?
James: Far in the past before Tableau, we were not able to do that in an instantaneous way. It would take us sometimes 10 to 12 hours to be able to collect all the data sets and making informed decisions about children.

Tableau: And now?
James: It works well with our student information system. We're using Tableau Online currently, and our partner that we work with does the back-end work for us.

It all creates a profile of a student. And but prior to Tableau, actually, usage. We only had spreadsheets to look at. And then that's everything in isolation. But when we able to bring it all together as a student profile of all the data sets that we have on one individual student, it clearly paints a clear picture of what needs to be done, what has been done, and what you need to continue to do.

Tableau: Does Tableau help you save time?
James: Time is very important. And many times in education, we think because we're busy we're doing something. And that's what we were doing in the past because we were busy, working with spreadsheets and looking in that isolation -- isolated numbers.

But with the limited time that it takes to access Tableau, we're really able to do something from that. So we think the actionable time is really key for us.

Tableau: Who is currently using Tableau?
James: Currently in our district, the district administrators and all school administrators have access. This year, our next steps this year would be to expand into teacher leaders, which will be far reaching into the schools at this point. In the future, we plan to expand it to all teachers. But we're excited about even expanding to teacher leaders this year.

Tableau: What has the overall impact of Tableau been?
James: It's really helping us, we think, to be able to change lives because data means something. And once you ask the right questions around it and be very intentional in -- in seeking those questions, you can find answers.

If you're not using Tableau, you're not doing data analytics around children.

We have changed in many ways. As I said, our data pieces are actionable as real live, real time, we can now go back and reflect, as a lot of questions, find more information about students and totally provide a full service to students and families by enabling us to do that.

We're always thinking of ways of how we can inform and input more data and make informed decisions. We're excited about the many workbooks that we have and things of that nature in Tableau.



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