50 top ed-tech products, straight from educators


Schoolrunner is a comprehensive student data system that gives teachers and schools one place to track everything they care about. “Through the implementation of this all-in-one student data system, we have significantly reduced the time to capture, analyze, and respond to teacher and student achievement needs by 50 percent,” said Naressa Cofiedl, director of excellence in programming for Choice Foundation-New Orleans. “SchoolRunner has supported us in meeting this goal by mapping all data sources and ensuring data are consistent and of high quality—[and turning] key performance indicators from various learning applications … into actionable performance metrics, dashboards, and reports via a user-friendly interface.”


SCORE21 (TE21)

The SCORE21 formative assessment builder helps prepare students for state and Common Core assessments by providing an item bank of more than 20,000 high-quality questions. With SCORE21, teachers can build rigorous practice tests in minutes. “We are using this product in grades 3-5 to enhance the reading, math, and science curriculum at our school,” said Wendy White, a science facilitator for North Carolina’s Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. “We have been using it for homework, practice, quizzes, and tests to prepare the students for the end-of-grade testing. The customer service is impeccable!”


SMART amp (SMART Technologies)

SMART amp is collaboration software that enables students and teachers to work together in real time to solve problems and understand concepts in shared workspaces, without switching between applications. “SMART amp is very easy to use, and the workspace that we use as our ‘canvas’ is very easy for the students to navigate,” said Rebecca Simon, ed-tech coach for Solomon Schechter School of Queens, N.Y. “We have not been using it for long, but so far, it has been a great success—and the students have loved learning with it.”


SNAP Health Center (Professional Software for Nurses Inc.)

SNAP Health Center is a comprehensive medical documentation and tracking software suite that manages every aspect of student health-related data. “It saves so much time and keeps information easily accessible,” said Irene Glenkowski, a health aide for Churchville-Chili schools in New York. “It’s the best, most reliable, [most] intuitive database on the market!”


TenMarks (TenMarks Education/Amazon)

TenMarks offers web-based math practice and instruction, with analytics to help track students’ progress. The basic version is offered free of charge, while a premium version includes real-time intervention and automated differentiation. “My small math group of five used the TenMarks Math Madness Competition as a challenge to beat their own weekly record,” said Beth Kirsling, a fourth grade teacher at St. Martin of Tours in Wisconsin. “The program was a great motivator and reviewed the math skills we worked on all year.”


TIPS (Awareity)

TIPS (Threat Assessment, Incident Management, and Prevention Services) is an easy way for students, parents, employees, and others to anonymously report suspicious incidents and concerns, as well as acts of kindness. “We use the TIPS platform to address school safety and bullying in our schools,” said Tenna Whitsel, student services and safe school coordinator for Oklahoma’s Tulsa Public Schools. “The best thing about the platform is that it promotes prevention and response before an incident gets out of hand. It is our primary vehicle for documenting response to reports on bullying.”


Untangle IC Control (Untangle)

Untangle IC Control network appliances give school leaders full insight into and control over all their internet traffic from a single interface. “Our legacy web filter could not stop web filter avoidance by students using SSL connections,” said Les Kern, director of technology for Minooka Community High School in Illinois. “Students were able to access inappropriate content—jeopardizing Minooka’s CIPA compliance and putting our eRate funding at risk. With Untangle IC Control installed, filter avoidance is no longer a problem, because students can’t use SSL or other techniques to avoid the filter. With IC Control, I now have a robust system in place that is unbreakable by our students, and I have peace of mind knowing our network is CIPA compliant.”


VariQuest Visual Learning Tools (Varitronics)

VariQuest is a full suite of products for creating posters, cutouts, awards, and other visual learning tools for the classroom. “We have created documents that we use in every classroom. It is keeping us organized and vertically aligned,” said Jillian Solberg, math and science instructional specialist for Sheridan Elementary School in Texas. “The equipment is extremely easy to use, and our customer service rep is extremely helpful.”


eSchool News Staff

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