Aug. 22, 2022 – Having 24/7 access to your student’s grades, attendance, schedule, and assignments is a reality for all Duval County Public Schools parents and guardians, thanks to the district’s online FOCUS portal.
It’s the kind of access Parent Academy specialist Ashley VanDenMeiracker says can encourage positive, long-term benefits for students and families.
“Research tells us that regardless of family income or background, students with parents and caregivers that are more involved in their education are more likely to attend school regularly, have better classroom behavior, and achieve higher academically,” says VanDenMeiracker.
By setting up a FOCUS account and linking their students, parents can use their desktops, phones, tablets or DCPS app to remain up to date with important information and updates.
Below, we’re breaking down the process in three steps.
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Step #1 – Create a Parent Account
Creating a Parent Account begins with heading to www.duvalschools.org/focus and selecting the “Create a Parent/Guardian Account” option. You will need to use Google Chrome, but can also use Safari on a Mac.
As you create your account, be sure to enter your own information and not your child’s. VanDenMeiracker advises paying close attention in accurately inputting your contact information, email address, and a password for account.
“The email address you create your FOCUS account with, make sure that it’s one that you use because the email address cannot be changed later” says VanDenMeiracker. “If for some reason you no longer had access to that email address, you have to create a whole new Parent account and go through those steps again.”
Once you’ve completed the online form:
- Look for a verification email to come to the address you used to create your account
- The email will come from [email protected] Check your spam or junk folders if you don’t see it right away.
- Click the email validation link to verify your email address and activate your account
Once your account is active, you will need to wait 24 hours before adding your student.
Step #2 – Link your student to your account
Once the 24-hour window has passed, you can now link your student to your account. To do so:
- Log into your Parent Account
- Click “My Links” on the left-hand side
- From there, select “Add Student” and complete all fields.
- You can add multiple children by clicking “add” as you fill out and complete all fields.
After you submit your child’s information, you will receive an additional email letting you know that you have 21 days to visit your child’s school and provide physical proof of your relationship. You will need to present a photo ID to the school’s front office.
Once the school processes and approves your request, you’ll receive another email letting you know that your student has been successfully added to your account. Within 24 hours of this approval, you’ll be able to log in and begin accessing your child’s information.
Step #3 – Begin navigating FOCUS
Once your student is plugged into your account, you’ll have the ability to view grades, assignments, and more 24-7. Some helpful highlights to keep in mind:
- The “Forms” tab will allow you to view and fill out all active forms that apply to your child. This includes magnet school applications, registration for transportation, and more
- Communicate with teachers directly by clicking on his or her name in your child’s schedule
- You can view a detailed breakdown of your child’s grades by clicking on the number listed. This will bring up a new screen with individual assignments, tests and quizzes.
- The “Planner” tab allows you to view any assignments that teachers have updated or uploaded to FOCUS
- You can update your current contact information under “My Profile”
- Clicking on the “Help” icon will give you access to tutorials and guides on how to use FOCUS. You can also use the search tab to search by keyword or topic
District technology staff are available to answer questions about FOCUS 7 days a week. You can reach Technology Services at (904) 348-7628 Monday – Friday 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and on weekends 7:30 AM to 4:30 PM.
You can also receive support via email at [email protected]