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The Unexpected Upside To Adopting A Student Movement System

One school. A sprawling, multi-building campus. Serving 3,000 students, Pennsbury High School in Fairless Hills, Pennsylvania has a lot of moving parts. And people.

Pennsbury High School
Fallsington, PA
Using SmartPass Since 2022-23
Using SmartPass For

Behavior incident prevention, Attendance management, Contact tracing during COVID-19

Megan Swope
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For the administrative team, overseeing 3,000 student movements throughout the day needed an upgrade. Paper passes allowing students to move from one room to another were proving to be an impossible way to track student movement patterns. Hallway monitors needed a more reliable way to ensure that students were either headed to the right place or in classrooms learning.

When a fellow teacher at Pennsbury High School discovered SmartPass and initiated contact with the team, Megan Swope, a Social Studies teacher, her colleague, and several other Pennsbury High staff piloted the use of SmartPass in the spring of 2019. The team had such success with SmartPass that the program expanded the following fall semester. Following even more positive feedback, SmartPass rolled out the program to the entire Pennsbury staff in the spring of 2020, just weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic began. By that time, both Swope and her colleague had already transitioned into new roles as full-time Educational Technology coaches in the district and were responsible for guiding their respective schools through the changes brought on by COVID-19.

Illness prevention was top-of-mind when students returned to campus in the late fall of 2020. Paper passes are unreliable and unsanitary, and don’t provide the necessary data to support contact tracing within the school. SmartPass’ room limits feature helped keep room populations within COVID guidelines. Readily available data reports gave Pennsbury’s health staff and school administrators a way to inform students and their families about potential close contacts.


Since returning to in-person instruction, Pennsbury High School’s continued use of SmartPass has proven to be what the staff needs to manage their hallways and so much more. After many months of being fully or partially remote, students and teachers needed to reacclimate to teaching and learning—and moving—within the physical school building.  Hallway monitors know who is supposed to be traveling from one location to another and report fewer wandering students and easier-to-supervise hallways.

Teachers and staff are pleased with the system, noting to Swope that the SmartPass interface is easy for them and their students to use. Teachers also indicate that they trust SmartPass’ customer service because they quickly receive personalized technical support from a real human when it’s needed.

SmartPass is serving more than teachers and aides in the hallway; attendance and main office staff were among the first to buy in on the system. The headache of admitting late students and locating those needed for early pick-ups is no more: SmartPass has streamlined the process with its “Future” passes and pass notifications to students and teachers. This allows school leaders to anticipate needs in a way that was never before possible. And, Pennsbury’s school administrators report that the data about room use is helpful for resource allocation and planning.

"You not only get a better view of what's happening across the entire school. You have a much more streamlined way of managing movement across the school."

— Megan Swope, Educational Technology Coach, Pennsbury High School

Smart Moves

Customer Support

"When my teachers click 'Contact Us,' [the support system] to report an error, they are getting personalized and relatively fast responses from SmartPass. It goes a long way to foster faith
in the system.

"You know these aren't just canned responses. It's not a bot answering your question. It's actually a real person. That goes a long way in any tech product, but especially one that the teachers are trying to use in the classroom."

Before & After

"We really had very little data about how frequently students were moving, especially between classes. SmartPass fixes that. Now, I can see what those patterns are. Administration really likes the global data they have about the students in our hallways. In parent meetings, SmartPass reports can be pulled that show how many times a student has been out of class during the week. It keeps them [students] accountable."


Among the most useful features of SmartPass, though, is the ability to manage “encounter prevention,” which helps prevent disruptive or unsafe meet-ups. Seeing a drop in incidents thanks to this feature is starting to improve the overall school culture and climate. In addition, the school-wide data reports available to administrators provide a clear picture of student behavior and add a new level of accountability to students in discussions about their academic and overall success.

For Pennsbury High School, the old way of managing student movement wasn’t viable for today’s teaching and learning environment, especially on a large, multi-building campus. SmartPass has streamlined the everyday processes around student movement and created a safer, better-managed campus for students and staff.

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