RocketScan Saves Paso Robles Unified School District Time and Money!
With nearly 7,000 students in Paso Robles’ school district, keeping track of school lunch applications is no elementary task.
Located in northern San Luis Obispo County, the unified joint district includes six elementary schools, two middle schools, two high schools, and an independent K-8th grade study center.
Paso Robles’ Culinary Arts Academy, an academic and instructional kitchen with a fully functional dining area, supplies sixteen sites in the district and supports local catering needs. Students who enroll in the four-semester high school curriculum have the opportunity to gain experience in a variety of food service operations and prepare for a culinary career.
Like every public school district, though, their food service endeavors still require a lot of paperwork.
Clerk Mary Gentry has been working for nearly four years to administer and process free and reduced school lunch applications for the district. Since she started in August 2015, they’d been using the RocketScan online application to process applications. It was, she said, a big improvement from previous years, when everything had to be manually processed.
RocketScan: An End to the Meal Application Paper Jam
The problem was that they were still receiving over half of the applications on paper, largely from low-income families with no internet access. “We’ve been trying to get them to use the online version, but it’s a long process,” Gentry says. With about 50% of the students on a reduced or free lunch program, the paperwork piled up quickly.
Then about two years ago, the school district elected to add on RocketScan’s scanning capability. And that’s when Gentry began noticing a huge difference.
Before scanning, each paper form had to be individually entered. The district would bring extra people in to help with applications at the beginning of the year. With the addition of scanning capability, Gentry can do the majority of it herself. Previously, it had taken an average of 2-7 minutes to process each one. “My first year, I was going home at 8 o’clock at night,” she says.
Today, the most time-consuming part is finding the student record. “I scan them in bulks of 25, it immediately, just boom boom boom, puts them in the system.” Once the applications are scanned in, Gentry says, it takes just a few seconds when it matches up or up to a minute if she has to search for the record.
The scanned entries are corrected as they go, but while there was a bit of a learning curve, the team didn’t take long to get the hang of it.
Gentry also appreciates the support of Image One’s customer service. “Whenever we have issues, we get them corrected right away,” she says.
Meal Application Process No Longer a Paper Ordeal
The change has made a big difference for the district, not only allowing them to process applications efficiently, but also meet the varying needs of their students and families.
And Paso Robles is not the only one grateful for the change. Instead of pulling extra long hours to get applications in at the beginning of the school year, Gentry has become a 6.5 hour-a-day employee.
“It’s a huge difference…a huge time saver,” she says.
To learn more about how RocketScan can save you hours of tedious manual processes, give us a call at 1-800-956-9000 x255.