A civic-minded citizen seeking the singularity

A project

Student Lottery

A small web app to conduct a randomized Student Lottery for enrollment.

The resulting process consisted of an export from PowerSchool, the Student Information System. The enrollee names were loaded into a small app in the browser, and plucked randomly until the enrollment threshold was reached. The results were displayed in real-time on a Projector in the school's cafeteria. Parents and students cheered when their name appeared on the screen.

When the selector hit the limit of 130-ish students for the Middle School, the selection stopped, and that was it. The results were in-turn exported to a .csv, and that information was used to change a flag on those students, integrating right into the school's enrollment process.

While working at Mare Island Technology Academy, each year, the school held a Student Lottery where a fixed number of enrollment spaces were randomly assigned to a larger number of applicants.

The original process entailed the handling of handwritten admissions applications and lists, issuing ids, associated with Bingo balls, and calling out numbers in the hall.

As a Technology Academy, I knew we could improve on the process. During the day, I worked with Main Office staff to develop repeatable paper and data handling processes. Focusing on getting good data in the system was something new for the group, but a collective effort made the process a success.

Technologies used: ruby, rails, javascript, and jquery