Walk Zones, Attendance Zones, Designated Choice Zones, oh my!… Are you a new parent or new to the area? Are you as confused as us by the Durham school zoning and the process for applying to charter or magnet schools? What are your kids' chances of going to the schools nearest your home? This application will provide parents who are looking to move to or within Durham a simple online interface to find out where your home sits within the different school zones, as well as give you relevant data for each school.

Phase 2 (design phase): Incorporate key data points (e.g. score improvement rates, teacher/student ratios, school report cards) that will help parents choose a school path

Goal: Remove friction for understanding the local school system (Improve drastically on existing DPS web tools)

Target group: Parents or Prospective Parents seeking to understand how their residential choice will impact where their kids can go to school.

Project Activity

Update #24

We met today and got a lot done, including:

  • Major SES/Emailing improvements (Colin)
  • Updated School Profile & Survey Form Templates (Alex + Sarah)
  • Fixed creating new schools in the admin (Jeremy)
  • Fixed huge security hole in API permissions (Jeremy)
  • Fixed Submit Date for new surveys (me)
  • Created a new Resend Survey admin action (me)
  • Updates to the school profile (Victor)
  • Developer documentation improvements for running front-end + backend locally (Colin)
  • Added Jeremy to production server (Jeremy + Colin)
  • Setup default field values in survey/profile for specific fields depending on type of school (Victor)

Outstanding items for launch: More QA & Testing!

There's a sample schools: You can set your email to the principal email. Send yourself a survey. Fill it out. We will be using that sample school as a demo in our meeting next Tuesday at 9am….

Sarah, Colin, and Jeremy also had a productive meeting with DPS this week. Here are the notes:

We will be at the meeting of school principals next week to demo the project and ask for everyone to fill out the survey.

Update #23

  • reviewed UI on touch/phone (Rosa)
  • reviewed state test data consolidated by David
  • tested production app and noted issues with WG Pearson shape file (Will)
  • worked on NC teaching working conditions survey data cleaning
  • more work on school profile survey design (Sarah)

Update #22

  • Migrated data from schools to the new School Profiles
  • Created automated email survey tool to send to school principles to collect school profile data not currently available
  • Collected feedback form User Design professional and made edits (Thanks Rosa!)
  • 75% finished pulling NC DPI School Teacher Working Conditions Survey data

Update #21

  • Alex and Sarah met with the Durham Charter Collaborative (which is board members and principals from Durham's charter schools) last week and they were very excited about the site. They all agreed to complete the survey once it's ready.
  • Sarah is reaching out to a handful of administrators from the 3 types of schools to get their feedback on the profile and confirm that we're not a) using the wrong language/categorizations anywhere b) asking for unrealistic info c) get their buy-in. So far so good.
  • Onboarded Melissa - who made her first commit - Awesome!
  • Victor cleaned up new survey form HTML & setup django environment
  • Jeremy reviewed NC Teacher Satisfaction survey data

Update #20

  • Sarah continued providing user feedback and prepped for charter group meeting
  • Squiggs did some tweaks for the profile page and the school list
  • Jeremy looked at acceptance rates for magnets for scraping
  • Alex committed a new API endpoint for school profile info
  • Jeremy got his development environment set back up

Update #19

  • Fixed a couple of backlog Issues (Jeremy, Squiggs)
  • Attempted to scraped data from PDF for Principles for each school (Chris K)
  • Working on front end issues in to improve centering on schools (Squiggs)
  • Working on phase 2 School Profile backend (Jeremy)

Update #18

  • Unique URL for SchoolSurveys (Alex)
  • Fixed UserSnap integration (Alex)
  • Survey of fields for manual scraping of school pages (Sarah)
  • School Guide page (James)
  • Worked on school profile page (Squiggs)

Update #17

  • onboarded new team members
  • refined fields for school profile
  • pulled together information for a sample profile to collect user feedback
  • began several UX tweaks including #235 lighting up the school icon on the map when you hover over the school name in the drop down list
  • inputted remaining user feedback from Nov survey into github

Update #16

  • New profile field brainstorm
  • New domain purchase by Colin
  • Sarah closed ticket #238 fixing a user submitted bug about a school's data
  • School profile page design rough out by Squiggs & Victor
  • New profile backend rough out by Jeremy
  • Suggestion to use django-reversions by Colin ( ) to track changes to school profiles due to survey submissions and data source pulls

Update #15

  • Analyzed/Reviewed 80 survey responses
  • Discussed strategy for info collection on School Profiles
  • Mocked up and discussed UX improvements to make on mapping tool
  • Scoped v2 on Waffle

Lot's of new backlog items on waffle

Update #14

Updates for the week:

  • Sarah —- Shared & reviewed survey results. Starting to write up summary.
  • Jeremy —- Triaged tickets.
  • Alex —- Introed Iron Yard student ( ) to project, merged his PR, and deployed.
  • Adam & Colin —- Met with PTA council. Discussed further outreach opportunities.

Update #13

mega props for megamilestones, team!

  • Partnering: Presented prototype to Durham Public Schools PTA and Chief Communications officer with extremely positive responses
  • User testing feedback: Completed user testing with 80 individuals via Duke Engineering School's Design Thinking Class (thanks!)
  • Data quality testing: ran 1000 test addresses throughout area both DPS and SchoolNav sites to test accuracy of results with 90-95% successful match
  • Finished Parent Survey and sent out to a few friendlies

Update #12

  • Added Usersnap - feedback tool
  • Added "priority" to magnets where there are zones
  • Updated "magnet" page in Navigating DPS section
  • Reviewed survey for parents

Update #10


  • a
  • b The elusive
  • c
  • d
  • e


  • Schelling's segregation model and focus on schools performance over demographics

Update #9

  • Sarah worked on adding mission statements to schools
  • Jeremy is automating attendance data input
  • Squiggs emailed education related community groups & is working on a key for the school list
  • Victor removed school list page. Added hours and renamed description -> mission statement. Frontend now shows mission statements.

Update #8

  • Squiggs' first merge
  • Reorganizing the ticket tracker to focus on Phase I / Phase II
  • Colin manually merged two Club Blvd school records
  • Discussions about next steps for adding additional school data:
  • Planning for surveying parents about how they would use this tool

Update #5

  • Onboarded d-griffin-dev (angular/frontend) & kyleg0 (data importing)
  • Added school URLs to API
  • Added email address link in docs
  • Reviewed outstanding backend issues

Update #3

  • Made the house location on map draggable to new locations (more dynamic browsing/results)
  • Added Distance to Schools from house on map - in api and Ui
  • Integrated Magnet school data (w grade_min / grade_max) from GIS
  • Bug fixes

Update #2

  • Fixes: map doesn't load most of the time.
    • New: each address has a unique url that can be shared.
    • New: School detail page (currently blank, I need business for page design)
    • New: Hovering over a school on the left panel highlights it on the map.
    • New: Left panel's schools are now clickable (school detail page)
    • Remove the 'all' tab.

Update #1

  • Removed selected school district when a tab is clicked.
  • Added new classes to the school icon to allow for better styling
  • Uncovered the reason why the option tab is not showing the list of school: the data is malformatted.