Inspiration for Local Hero

Schools often have Student Information System (SIS) data that they want to make available and maintained and accurate  in Google Sheets for purposes that may not not be accommodated within the SIS itself. Some examples  might include building custom data dashboards from Sheets, charts, and Sites using  live attendance and course pass rates, creating merged documents such as report cards, sending targeted communications via Google Sheets Add-on email merge utilities, dynamically populating Google Forms fields, or connecting Sheets data to any number of other services via integration engines such as Zapier or IFTTT. Local Hero automatically syncs your data and lets you get on with more important work by breaking SIS data out of its silo and granting it all the superpowers available in Google Sheets.

The Local Hero solution

Local Hero provides a simple method to automatically sync CSV files from any directory on your network or local filesystem directly to Google Sheets, and Local Heros’ sync methods are highly flexible, allowing for records in Sheets to be selectively updated from CSV source data based on matching key, like Student ID.  

An important caveat: Local Hero handles the automation of the local-CSV to Sheets update process, however it assumes that you have a separate process for creating and scheduling the delivery of the CSV exports themselves. Typically CSV data exports from an SIS can be generated through scheduled tasks that run SQL queries against the database (if your SIS permits direct database access), through a local ODBC or JDBC client application that queries the database, or through scheduled tasks that retrieve files from an SFTP file delivery location where data exports are configured within the SIS platform itself.  If you need help setting up a scheduled data export solution that works in your environment, consider reaching out to your SIS provider or engaging Amplified IT support hours.    

Once you have scheduled tasks that deliver the right CSV exports  to a local computer, Local Hero lets you  create sync jobs and schedule these to run at hourly or daily intervals or a specific time of day. Once you know data is always up-to-date in Sheets, your team can build customized, collaborative data dashboards for leadership and teaching staff, create provisioning automations using Apps Script and Add-ons for Sheets, or design  smarter school processes, and interventions that leverage live attendance or gradebook data.