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December 12, 2023

How Massachusetts Revamped Their Mandated Reporter Training Platform

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Mandated Reporter Training

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Massachusetts and their Office of the Child Advocate (OCA) turned to MandatedReporterTraining.com for a cloud-based, Software as a Service (SaaS) Learning Management System (LMS) solution along with the content necessary to deliver Mandated Reporter Training to state-mandated reporters of abuse. MA legislation identifies a wide variety of mandated reporters, including educators, first responders, and medical personnel in the Commonwealth. Mandated Reporter Training’s all-in-one Learning Management System for Massachusetts includes profession-specific learning paths, SCORM-compliant courses, certificates with unique non-duplicable numbers, interactive and engaging course content that is specific to Massachusetts' statutes and regulations, data, analytics and reporting, individual and organization access, & the ability to operate on multiple platforms.

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Training MA Mandated Reporters

In Massachusetts, certain professionals are designated as mandated reporters of child abuse and neglect. As mandated reporters, these individuals have a legal obligation to report any suspected cases of child abuse to the relevant authorities. The OCA leads this charge as an independent office within the Executive Branch to oversee children served by the child welfare or juvenile justice systems. Their duties involve investigating critical incidents, receiving and investigating complaints, reviewing and making recommendations for system-wide changes, educating the public, and providing annual and public reports.

Massachusetts law (MGL c.119, § 51A) requires mandated reporters to immediately make an oral report to the Department of Children and Families (DCF) when, in their professional capacity, they have reasonable cause to believe that a child under the age of 18 is suffering from abuse or neglect. Mandated reporters must also submit a written report to DCF within 48 hours.

SCORM Compliance

SCORM stands for Shareable Content Object Reference Model. When courseware is SCORM compliant, it means that content and courseware can be shared and implemented with any other learning management system (LMS) that is also SCORM compliant. This allows courseware to easily transition to other SCORM-compliant LMSs while allowing tracking data to be retained so that student’s progress can be tracked across numerous platforms.

This was especially important as the OCA expected that other Mandated Reporter cohorts, such as first responders and medical providers, may shift to using their own LMS in the future to simplify their training experience. Making their Mandated Reporter training SCORM-compliant will simplify this potential process and make the transition period seamless without any data loss.

Azure Cloud and System Capacity

Massachusetts estimated that they would need to support at least 100,000 users annually, which is no problem for the MRT platform. MandatedReporterTraining.com (MRT) is hosted in the Microsoft Azure cloud and accommodates based on the number of active users. During peak usage, the Azure cloud has the ability to scale resources with an “elastic pool” to accommodate capacity.

As an example, the current platform implemented for California supports nearly 5,000 users per day and has issued millions of training certificates with no risk regarding capacity.

Unique Certificate Verification

Validating that a learner has completed their training is a concern for many states that have had issues with fraudulent certificates of completion in the past. The MandatedReporterTraining.com platform helps organizations and states like Massachusetts verify certificates of completion using QR-code-based interoperable learning records (ILRs), also known as Learning and Employment Records (LERs). These records are databases where students and employees are able to store any certificates, endorsements, letters of recommendation, etc., that future schools and employers can access (with permission) and view a comprehensive overview of their previous professional & educational experiences. Upon completion of a learning path, users are issued a certificate of completion with a non-duplicable, unique identification number. After just 1 month of being implemented, the Massachusetts Mandated Reporter Training platform was able to issue several thousand verifiably unique certificates.

Digital learning has become more commonplace in recent years, bringing a need to build bridges between learners, educators, and employers. These records allow learners to document and share their training and experience easily with employers, who in turn, get more of a precise insight into the skills and abilities of potential employees. All the while, educators are able to better serve their learners by providing more transparent learning records that display the work-relevant skills learned in each course or program.

Platform Upgrades

In addition to the technical aspects that were included, the base functionality of the MRT platform was also beneficial. MRT offers a clean and easy-to-use front-end website for delivering, organizing, and managing courses and related content. In addition to the profession-specific course content, users also get access to any other professional courses that are added in the future.

Users are also able to learn at their own pace. Users are able to pause training as needed and return to the course later without losing their place. In addition, users can also check their progress along the way, access older certificates, and view their entire course history. This is also accessible to leaders of an organization. They can view all of their employees' progress and course history, and assign courses as needed, making training more organized and streamlined.

Find out more about how MandatedReporterTraining.com is being used in other states, and sign up today.

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