Unlock Transformation and Optimization With Predictive Analytics

Dr. Raju Varanasi Explains How Predictive Analytics Enhances Student Performance
Gina Pianta, senior manager of data storytelling at the Catholic Schools Office; and Dr. Raju Varanasi, director of data intelligence at the Catholic Education Office

The Catholic School Office of Parramatta Diocese has cleaned and analyzed student data for 12 years. The data, which includes both strengths and weaknesses of the students, was then fed into machine learning models to establish correlations and patterns. As a result, the models are now able to predict student performance with nearly 94% accuracy. The insights gleaned from this data are presented in a storytelling format to effectively communicate their findings.

Gina Pianta, senior manager of data storytelling at the Catholic School Office of Parramatta, states that it has been a 12-year journey of progress. She believes predictive analytics is a powerful tool to forecast future outcomes based on historical data analysis.

According to Dr. Raju Varanasi, director of data intelligence at the Catholic Education Office in Parramatta, predictive models are no longer limited to measuring student performance. The same machine learning models are now being utilized to optimize and transform other parts of the organization. "We use these models to find rogue wireless access points across our school network, which helps us in strengthening our network security," Dr. Varanasi says.

In Part 1 of this interview with Information Security Media Group, Dr. Varanasi and Pianta explained how they use data analytics to reduce school exits. In Part 2, they discuss:

  • Extending the machine learning models to areas other than student performance;
  • Efforts to remove biases from ML models;
  • Importance of data literacy in the success of analytics projects.

Dr. Varanasi has more than 30 years of experience in the education industry, public sector and non-profit agencies in Australia. He has successfully managed business units, digital platforms, strategy development and service delivery.

As a data visualization expert, Pianta assists all 82 Catholic Schools Offices with innovative tools that help in predicting outcomes so that teachers can take appropriate actions to improve the performance of the students objectively.

About the Author

Rahul Neel Mani

Rahul Neel Mani

Founding Director of Grey Head Media and Vice President of Community Engagement and Editorial, ISMG

Neel Mani is responsible for building and nurturing communities in both technology and security domains for various ISMG brands. He has more than 25 years of experience in B2B technology and telecom journalism and has worked in various leadership editorial roles in the past, including incubating and successfully running Grey Head Media for 11 years. Prior to starting Grey Head Media, he worked with 9.9 Media, IDG India and Indian Express.

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