Skyward said it has updated the Family Access portal within its school administrative software to work more like Facebook, an interface that parents and students are quite familiar with, and is getting ready to launch a learning management system as well. The Skyward Course Management Center will include “digital lockers” for students, a teacher content locker for sharing documents and assignments, and electronic discussion boards—all tied directly to the company’s online gradebook software.

Skyward also has introduced a free tool called SkyCoder, giving users more control over their data management. Using SkyCoder, Skyward customers can tailor their screens and data field rules to fit their needs without using in-house development staff or expensive customizations, thereby saving time and money, the company said.

SunGard K-12 Education said it has partnered with One Call Now as its provider for mass communications. The alliance brings One Call Now’s mass notification capabilities to SunGard’s software, the company said—extending the communications features of its eSchoolPLUS student information system.

Xirrus discussed its advanced wireless networking technology, a modular design that reportedly solves for density and bandwidth issues. The company’s wireless arrays, including the XR 520, use between two and 16 radios, combined with a high-gain directional antenna, onboard multi-gigabit switch, controller, firewall, threat sensor, and spectrum analyzer. This architecture provides up to four times the coverage, eight times the bandwidth, and eight times the capacity, Xirrus says.