NextGen Feature Focus: Database Architecture, Security, School & District Management, Code Sets
Apr 08, 2022

The future of Aeries is rapidly approaching! The first sets of features for the Next Generation of Aeries have been designed with our users’ needs in mind. Not only will […]

The Aeries Team

NextGen Feature Focus: Database Architecture, Security, School & District Management, Code Sets

The future of Aeries is rapidly approaching! The first sets of features for the Next Generation of Aeries have been designed with our users’ needs in mind. Not only will NextGen be more secure, it will be scalable, too. As we continue to develop NextGen, we will be keeping our users updated each step of the way with upcoming blogs. We are pleased to share our first batch of features. Let’s dive in!

Database Architecture

The Next Generation of Aeries will utilize a longitudinal database, with a focus on ensuring normalization of the data, which means less duplication! This design, particularly the longitudinal piece, will allow users to access data across school years without changing databases, and with that, be able to more easily observe data changes over time. The result is that each customer will have one database (for live data – sandbox databases will also be available), not one for each year. This will result in a greatly reduced amount of data anomalies.

The majority of a district’s data will live in an Amazon Aurora MySQL (compatible) database, but various NoSQL databases will be utilized for system and user settings, plus an S3 storage service will be used for files, such as images and documents. This differentiation of storage models will allow for optimized performance of data retrieval.

Security

Security is essential to controlling access to Aeries. While our primary goal is to ensure access to the system can be configured to precisely fit the needs of the users, we also need to consider ease of maintenance. With these factors in mind, we are creating a single sign-on (authenticate once) solution that can be managed by a role-based access control model to allow any user to access any part of the system with the right permission sets.

One big change is that Aeries will no longer be the identity provider for users. Instead, we will be utilizing the services of a third party identity provider to manage and store user credentials. With this 3rd party identity provider, we can authenticate the user once, and allow that user into any of our systems, assuming that user has the proper authorizations to access said system. Authorization management will not be offloaded, and remain managed within Aeries itself.

School & District Management

District and School Options will be easier to configure in Aeries NextGen. Having the options in one place along with the grouping of related options and the Option Filter will allow users to configure a feature quickly. Also, the requirement of special permissions to update these option sections would allow a district to lock down some highly-impacted options. Most options will have an effective year to handle the longitudinal database structure.

Code Sets Management

A variety of codes are managed in several different places in Classic Aeries. The NextGen solution will address specific functionality needs:

  • Local Codes – managed by Customers
  • Fixed Codes – managed by Aeries
  • Translation of Codes into different languages
  • Cross-References between Local Codes and State Reporting Codes
  • Extended Options for specific Code Sets

There will be a single management page that affords access to both fixed and local codes. Codes can have effective start and end school years, longer code values, and reusable code sets. Codes can be defined at the district level with school-level visibility.

For more information on the details of the Next Generation product features visit aeries.link/next-gen-features. To stay connected, be sure to follow along on our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Lastly, be sure to keep your eyes peeled on our Events Page for NextGen specific webinars. We can’t wait to continue sharing more exciting updates with you as we transition into the future of Aeries.

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