Class120 is a new app that monitors if a college student is in class. When a student misses a class, a message will be sent to their parents’ phones notifying them of the absence.
The service launched on Jan. 20 and works by having students upload their class schedule onto the program’s site. An app on the student’s phone tracks if you are in the proper location for your class, according to Class120’s website.
For the basic package, students can pay either $17.99 a month or $199 a year for the product. While notifications are sent to the parent, there is an option to message the student only.
“Class attendance, more than how much you study or how well you study, determines how well a student will do,” said Jeff Whorley, the Founder and CEO of Core Principle, who created Class120.
Whorley came up with the concept for Class120 after speaking to a college professor four years ago about how to improve graduation rates. The professor explained that the students with the highest graduation rates were those who were student athletes.
The student athletes at this particular school had their absences reported to the athletics department.
Graduation rates for Division I scholarship athletes for a four year college degree is 84%-88% while being around 50% for everyone else, according to Whorley.
“About 50% of all freshmen that begin do not have a degree in four years. That’s a real problem,” Whorley said.
While some university athletic departments track athletes’ attendance, the UO’s athletics department does not, according to Steve Stolp, the executive director of the services for student athletes department at the UO.
Stolp said the father in him would like such a service to track his kids. But in reality, he believes that advances in social media could allow him to track down whoever he wanted without paying for Class120.
“So, maybe an attendance app as a goal setting tool would be useful,” said Stolp. “But I’m not terribly interested (in) prison ankle bracelets for college students, if you know what I mean.”
College students who are being supported by their families “feel like it’s a fair agreement with their parents,” said Whorley, and the service is “not intended to disrupt a fun college life.”
Some students at the UO think that the service is unnecessary, such as freshman Jesse Blakely.
“I think it would be kind of redundant to send (notifications) to yourself,” Blakely said, “and to send it to your parent is ridiculous.”
Core Principle plans on creating new products and wishes to have universities adopt Class120 as they expand their business. The company is currently working with an unnamed school to fully adopt the program, which will be announced in the fall, according to Rick Lewis, a marketing specialist working for the firm that promotes the product.
“For parents who are paying thousands of dollars a year, we think they have the right to know if a student is in class,” said Lewis.
Those wishing to learn more about the service or how to purchase it can go online to www.class120.com.
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