The SIF Association today announced the public release of the SIF Implementation Specification (United States) 2.6, which expands the existing SIF Data Model to meet end user and developer interoperability demands in the education marketplace.
This new release introduces further data interoperability extensions in the areas of Assessment, Energy Usage, Response to Intervention, Staff Section Assignment, and Staff Evaluation objects, as well as infrastructure enhancements which will increase SIF solution scalability for periods of high message traffic such as might occur at the end of a reporting period.
– Assessment: Several new objects relating to assessment have been introduced, including those dealing with assets, sessions, sections, item references, score table and scoring rubric. All of these new additions will provide a greater scoring capability, easier access to content and a more powerful way to create linkages between assessment items.
– Energy Usage: Designed to allow the correlation of energy usage and demand cost and external environmental data (such as temperature) in a series of standardized time based measurements, this object has the potential to significantly increase the effectiveness of Energy Analysis and Reporting programs at the State and District levels in terms of isolating equipment problems and providing data feedback on energy audits and effectiveness.
– Response to Intervention: Educators can now view the RTI information of their students alongside their test scores. The Response to Intervention objects establish the specific intervention for a student and provide the specific results for individual students resulting from the intervention.
– Staff Section Assignment links a Staff member to a Section. It contains the Teacher of Record (TOR) value which assigns a responsibility or credit percentage for a specific portion of a student’s learning to one or more teachers and tracks the extent of such teacher to student contact. TOR was specifically designed to support Race to the Top and existing APPR (Annual Professional Performance Review) regulations from various states.
– Staff Evaluation Info standardizes the reporting of additional APPR information. It includes elements containing Staff, School and Evaluator ID, Bargaining Unit, type of staff evaluation, evaluation milestone dates (from pre to post conference), evaluation tool(s) used, and a section by section breakdown of the evaluation results (name, score and scale) and the final recommendation.
– Scalability: With the latest SIF Specification release, it becomes possible to combine individual SIF event messages and transmit and acknowledge them in a single “BundledEvents” message which greatly improves Zone scalability.
Additional details on all the above changes are provided within the Specification documentation.
“We are delighted to release this latest version of the SIF Implementation Specification for the US”, stated Larry Fruth Ph.D., Executive Director/CEO of the SIF Association. “Once again, the contribution from the SIF Community has been a true measure of the enthusiasm and support for our joint efforts to further develop this open Specification. Looking ahead, I believe the level of ongoing collaboration among our member vendors and end users will enhance the standard even further to allow it to meet additional data interoperability and security requirements of the educational domain.”
The SIF Implementation Specification (United States of America) 2.6 can be found at http://specification.sifassociation.org/Implementation/US/2.6/.
About the SIF Association
The SIF Association is a unique, non-profit collaboration composed of over 3,200 schools, districts, local authorities, states, US and International Ministries of Education, software vendors and consultants who collectively work to define the rules and regulations for educational software data interoperability.
The SIF Implementation Specifications they produce are not a product, but a technical blueprint for enabling diverse software applications to efficiently, reliably and securely share data related to entities in the educational marketplace, regardless of the platform hosting those applications.
For the vendor, the SIF standard facilitates seamless data sharing and reporting between conformant K-12 applications without incurring expensive customer-specific development costs. For the end user, the application conformity it provides, allows schools and District and State Educational Authorities to purchase and deploy best-of-breed solutions easily and seamlessly. For further information, visit http://www.sifassociation.org.