Cloud-based identities for differentiated learning in a Texas school district

YES Prep is a public charter school system serving 11,600 students in grades 6–12 in Houston’s most under-served communities. To help teachers provide differentiated instruction, YES Prep is building a student profile dashboard that provides an aggregated view of data pulled from dozens of applications.

Cloud-based identity in Schools With EM+S

To streamline that process, YES Prep worked with us at Oxford Computer Group to create a cloud-based identity access and management solution using Microsoft Enterprise Mobility + Security that provides single-sign-on access to those applications. As a result the district is able to take full advantage of the identity security features in Azure to gain proactive protection from a constantly evolving threat landscape. Plus, easier access to data saves teachers more than 100 hours of planning time each semester, which they reinvest in their students. And the district IT team saves time on identity issues, which it channels into supporting classroom initiatives.

“All the key IT processes that add value to our end product—student success—revolve around identities”

“When you really get down to it, we’re in the identity business,” says Richard Charlesworth, Chief Information Officer at YES Prep, which runs 16 schools serving 11,600 students. “All the key IT processes that add value to our end product – student success – revolve around identities. And identity solutions have been very immature in education compared to other industries.”


“We have a lot of systems that students and teachers want to use”, says YES Prep’s Troy Neal, “and we wanted to give them a true, easy-to-use experience to access those tools and resources to enable instruction.” In this short video (1 minute, 17 seconds) Troy Neal outlines the problem he was trying to solve for YES Prep Public Schools.

Want the full story? In this video (28 minutes, 59 seconds), Troy Neal and OCG consultant Frank Drewes explain the identity solution and the impact it has had in more detail.

This presentation was filmed at Oxford Computer Group’s Identity Summit in Redmond, WA, in May 2016.

Download a PDF of this Case Study

Is your school or district facing similar problems? Are you interested in implementing a single, scalable identity solution? Then call us for advice today. We have  significant experience working in higher education and can get very complex systems up and running without fuss. We’ll save you and your users time. We’ll also save your organization money, enabling more to be spent on educating our young people.