Access Control SIF Compliant For Schools?

Does anyone know of an access control system solution that is SIF (Schools Interoperability Framework) compliant? Here's a basic understanding of what SIF is and how it operates in a school environment.

I've been unable to locate an access control manufacturer that supports this standard. It seems odd that this is not more common in light of attention and need for security in K-12 schools. I believe that a security vendor that can provide this compatibility would have a distinct advantage when competing with those who do not.


Hi Tom,

The link in your post does not work

The link I provided seems to have stopped working. Here is another.

Here's the google cache of it that is working.

Hi Tom,

A quick view of the document gives me the impression that this is similar to an Active Directory integration that is specific to the education vertical. Specifically, what information would you want passed through the sub-systems?

Hello Tom:

According to SIF's Certified Products List, there are no 'physical access control' systems listed. I think it is much more likely that an already certified system (eg: Infinite Campus, ProActiveSchool) will branch out into access control with a custom module than an access vendor will develop a SIF-certified platform.

I do remember talking to CBORD about this a number of years ago, I'll ask to see if they have a partner that offers a SIF certified solution.

Thanks Brian!

John, thanks for the cached link. Mark, the school system is looking for real time data exchange with their student information system. They use that system to students and update student Information. Specifically they would like to link information such as "First Name" , "Last Name", "School Name", "Grade Level", "Active or Inactive Status". They would like to reduce the duplication efforts of data entry and keep the schools card status up to date more efficiently. With the SIF integration, when a student is entered into the SIS the pertinent data would populate the database in the card access system like it does now in the school lunch system, library system, etc. If a student is suspendEd, the card status would automatically become inactive until the student is reinstated. When schools are closed (snow day, scheduled breaks, summer recess) card status would update as well to keep students from entering the schools. At the end of each school year when students advance a grade level and move to another school ie Elementary School to Midle School, their access levels chage as appropriate. New students entering at the beginning of each school year and those graduating after 12rh grade data entry would be updated via real time data exchange with SIS.

Ok, that sounds exactly like an Active Directory cardholder (not operator) integration.

This is the first that I've heard of SIF- do you have an idea of how common this is in schools accross the US and elsewhere?

Mark, this is the first time I've run into this request. I'm not sure how common this is in schools across America. According to the school administrators I'm talking to they say it is becoming more popular as more technology finds its way into schools.

I'll ask our engineering department to take a look at the integration documents for this.

If an integration is not a common market request, then you will find that some manufacturers will propose to do the integration at a cost: they will charge (all or a part of) the engineering time for the integration.

Most manufacturers will not accept to develop any new integrations unless there is a solid business case to back it up and I'm afraid that a single spec that requests a feature is not normally considered a solid business case. The engineering effort to integrate to a third-party product/standard/protocol is often significant (writing the middleware; testing the solution; keeping up with the protocol/standard in the future).

"This is the first that I've heard of SIF- do you have an idea of how common this is in schools across the US and elsewhere?"

SIF is not common in the US. I think it may have some success in the UK, but for the most part SIF is a non-factor in access control to most in the education verticals. Not to say it is a bad idea, but consensus is unlikely.