At your service...

AIM is at your service.
Contact us via email or call us in-state toll-free between 8:00am and 5:00pm MT at 1.877.424.6681, Local 406.444.3800

MAIN CONTACTS

Data questions, policy, and general instructions:

Password Information:

  • OPI AIM Help Desk, 406.444.3800

INFINITE CAMPUS CONTACTS

  • Help Desk Technical Questions, 888.461.2004

OPI Staff Directory

Questions or concerns about this webpage?
Please contact the OPI Help Desk at opihelpdesk@mt.gov or 406.444.0087

 

Achievement in Montana (AIM)

 

AIM Data Collection Guides

 

AIM User Guides by Topic or Function

 

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AIM General Information

The purpose of this page is to provide general information about the OPI AIM student information system along with its purpose and processes.

At any time, should you have questions, suggestions or need further information, please call or email the OPI AIM Help Desk: 1-877-424-6681 opiaimhelp@mt.gov

The AIM system is designed to collect demographic, enrollment, program participation, and assessment data for each student. The program also tracks special education students IEP data and all students’ movement from school to school and district to district within Montana. It allows for timely reporting and data accuracy through standardized reporting capabilities. This system allows school districts to submit the required student information electronically. The AIM system provides the OPI, the State of Montana, federal entities, and the education community timely and accurate data about the progress of our students, schools, school districts and the state.

Please see the AIM Policy References webpage (gray buttons listed on the left of each page) for pertinent State and Federal laws that apply to AIM.

The state of Montana Office of Public Instruction (OPI) adopted the Infinite Campus software application as its statewide student information system (SIS) in 2006 through an RFP process. The OPI calls the state level SIS ‘Achievement In Montana’ (AIM). The name of the company who owns the Infinite Campus software is also called Infinite Campus. The company is located in Minnesota, has been in business for over 22 years and is the one of the largest student information systems in the country. There are multiple editions of the software based on the use of the application. The ’State Edition’ of Infinite Campus is used by the OPI staff and contains the state-reported student data from all Montana districts. The OPI pays an annual fee for this system that is based on a ‘per student’ cost. The current contract between the OPI and Infinite Campus runs through June 30, 2021.

In order to accommodate all the various SIS’ throughout Montana, the OPI built, along with our State Edition of Infinite Campus, a Montana Edition.  This Montana Edition is provided to the districts at no cost, so that the schools who didn’t use Infinite Campus as their local SIS could submit their data into our Infinite Campus statewide system for state reporting.   It contains the same basic student data as the state edition, including the Special Education student data.

The ‘Montana Edition – Valued Added’ is typically used by small districts as their main local student information system. Districts use it to maintain their basic set of enrollment, demographic, programs and special education IEP data.  The ‘value added’ feature of this edition also allows districts to maintain students’ daily attendance and marks data.

The ‘District Edition’ of Infinite Campus is the edition that can be used by the districts as their complete local SIS with a wide range of features. Districts that use this ‘District Edition of Infinite Campus as their local SIS receive a discount on the cost of their annual contract.  Because the OPI chose Infinite Campus State Edition for the statewide student data collection and management system, the OPI was able to negotiate a lower cost for any district that opts to use the full ‘District Edition’ of Infinite Campus with cloud hosting. This cost negotiation provides a significant savings to the districts and taxpayers of Montana.   Currently, approximately a third of the districts in Montana use this edition.

Reduce financial cost: It is more cost effective with the discount allowed through the negotiations between the OPI and Infinite Campus. Also, for smaller districts, there is not minimum pricing associated with enrollment counts on the district's license and support fees.
Reduce verification time: One of the main advantages for a district who uses Infinite Campus as a local SIS is less time involved with verifying data in multiple systems.
Eliminate programmer scripting time: For larger districts, another advantage is eliminating the time/work it takes to create and maintain the programming scripts to export the data and match file upload templates.
Eliminate upload time: It eliminates the wait time for the data to upload and get copied to the state.
Eliminate dual entry: For some districts it eliminates duplicate entry into two systems (local SIS and Infinite Campus Montana Edition).

The data originates at the district level and gets copied to the state level of Infinite Campus by a syncing process. The syncing process happens automatically when data is manually entered and ‘saved’ in Infinite Campus or when the district executes a mass syncing process to get the data copied to the state level.

If the local district data is housed in a different local student information system (other than Infinite Campus), for larger districts it goes through a mass export and then an upload process to get into the Montana Edition of AIM. The smaller districts can choose to hand enter their data into the Montana Edition.  It then goes through a final nightly syncing process to get copied into the State Edition of AIM. 

Once the data is at the state level it is ready to be reviewed and validated by the OPI staff for reporting purposes.  The OPI utilizes state level data snapshots processes for some of the federal reporting which affects district funding.  The districts utilize import processes to copy their district’s state level data into other OPI subsystems that also affect school funding (such as MAEFAIRS, Reporting Center and Special Education). There are multiple other systems that pull data from the State level AIM system data such as (Child Nutrition Program) CNP for Free and Reduced lunch funding.

AIM Data Flow Chart

AIM Data Dictionary

AIM Data Dictionary
This Data Dictionary is intended to assist local education agencies (LEA) staff and their student information system vendors in understanding the specific data elements and codes that must be populated for state reporting through AIM. It is intended to improve the accuracy and integrity of collected data by maintaining consistency in data elements. It relies and builds on previous data definitions, used throughout the agency, that meet state and federal guidelines for collecting and reporting purposes.

Infinite Campus Version Update Schedule

2016-17 School Year:
Scheduled Update (weekend of) Version 
Feb. 24, 2017 1649, 1701
Mar. 17, 2017 1705
April 29, 2017 1709, 1713
July 7, 2017 1717
2017-18 School Year:
 Scheduled Update (weekend of) Version
Aug. 4, 2017 1721, 1725, 1729
Oct. 27, 2017 1733
Dec. 29, 2017 1737, 1741
Feb. 23, 2018 1745, 1749
Apr. 27, 2018 1801

 

How to Find Information on Updates to Infinite Campus

NOTE: You will need to be logged in to Campus Community in order to use the following hyperlinks and resources. Should you need to setup an account please refer to the OPI AIM user guide Creating a Campus Community Account.

Infinite Campus Release Notes Page - This is the page in Campus Community with links to each version's Release Notes.

New Release Lunch & Learn Webinars - Infinite Campus conducts and records these monthly webinars that provide an overview of what the update will cover. They occur on either the first or second Thursday of each month at 12:00 Noon Central Time. To sign up for the live webinar, go to the Campus Community News Page and in the right column under Upcoming Events you will find these webinars listed, among others from ICU. These are free to all and you don't have to have an ICU account. You can find the archive of prerecorded Lunch & Learn webinars by scrolling down to the bottom of the FREE ICU Recorded Webinars page.

Technical References

INFINITE CAMPUS REFERENCES

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AIM Policy References

AIM DATA SECURITY POLICIES

AIM DATA SECURITY PRESENTATIONS

AIM RELEVANT STATE LAWS AND RULES

US DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION RACE & ETHNICITY POLICY Q&A LINKS

The U.S. Department of Education has finalized changes to the collection and reporting of race and ethnicity. Starting with the 2010-2011 school year, the new standards will require all students to be identified using a new two-part race/ethnicity question. The federal government has established the two-part question to recognize Hispanic ethnicity and race as two separate and distinct concepts. Additionally, the change allows the reporting of multiple races (American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Black or African American, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and White).

The OPI has developed the following guidance and resource materials for district use as they transition to the new standards.

Additional Resources

Montana Early Warning System (EWS)

The Montana EWS model uses readily available school, student, and other live data to identify students who are at risk of dropping out of school before they drop out. Students are identified early on so that action can be taken by school officials to help keep the student in school. The Montana EWS is a logistic regression model that uses attendance, behavior, grades, mobility, and other data to determine if a student is at risk. The model will identify students in grades 6-12 that are at risk and also provide indicators for why each student is at risk.

Since the Montana EWS uses live data it can be run at any time during the school year or summer. What this does is allow educators to see how a student is progressing or regressing over time. Tracking over time also allows educators to track any interventions they are administering with students to determine if the interventions are in fact working.

School reports are also available on the Montana EWS that allow educators to track their school-wide EWS results over time. The school reports also allow schools to compare their results to the statewide average results to get an idea of where their school is at.

EWS User Guide: Montana Early Warning system – Required Data Setup 12/16. This is a link to documentation inside Campus Community* and is for districts using the District Edition of Infinite Campus as their primary student information system. Please refer to the “Required Data Setup” section by clicking on that hyperlink at the top of the page, just under the title.

*A Campus Community account is no longer required for most hyperlinks to Campus Community documentation. However, if you want to sign up, we have a user guide for that: Creating a Campus Community Account.

If you have further EWS questions please contact: Eric Meredith Education Data Analyst Office of Public Instruction emeredith@mt.gov 406-444-3642.

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