3 ways the E-rate program helps level up learning

The federal E-rate program continues to provide expanded access to technology, including edtech tools, digital learning resources, and high-speed internet access, to schools, according to an annual report that takes stock of the program’s progress.

The findings come from E-rate compliance services firm Funds For Learning‘s 12th annual E-rate Trends Report. The report is designed to understand how the program can best serve schools and libraries. Stakeholder input is compiled and delivered directly to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to inform program administration.

Key findings from the 2022 report include:…Read More

Learn to align your communication strategies with school safety

Having a campus-wide communication ecosystem is imperative, and school district leaders have no higher priority than to create secure and informed campus environments.

Being able to initiate a controlled emergency notification protocol to alert, notify and monitor directly from a mobile device, classroom audio system, or interactive flat panel is essential.

An eSchool News panel of experts, including Brent Thrasher, Instructional Technology Coordinator at Overton County Schools and Todd Eddy from Galaxy Next Generation, offers insights into how to make better decisions, prevent risk, and strengthen communication between faculty, administration, and first responders during an active threat.…Read More

17 Hero Awards finalists demonstrate their commitment to education

The eSchool News K-12 Hero Awards recognize the dedicated efforts of education professionals across K-12 departments, including IT, curriculum, instruction and administration. 

Sponsored this year by JAR Systems and SAP Concur, the program received an influx of inspiring nominations that highlight the innovation and selflessness of educators in schools and districts across the nation.

Listed here is the second group of the program’s finalists. The first group of finalists was featured on eSchool News last week–find them here!…Read More

Hero Awards finalists: 18 schools and educators dedicated to learning

The eSchool News K-12 Hero Awards recognize the dedicated efforts of education professionals across K-12 departments, including IT, curriculum, instruction and administration. 

Sponsored this year by JAR Systems and SAP Concur, the program received an influx of inspiring nominations that highlight the innovation and selflessness of educators in schools and districts across the nation.

Listed here in the order in which their nominations were received are program finalists. Stay tuned, because the second group of finalists will be featured on eSchool News next week!…Read More

LINQ Announces New, Innovative Food Distribution Program

LINQ, the only 100% cloud and browser-based school nutrition and administration solutions available to the K-12 industry, today announced the launch of its Food Distribution Program (FDP). LINQ FDP enables K-12 districts to accurately forecast USDA Foods ordering to maximize their Planned Assistance Level (PAL) usage while maximizing inventory. For State Agencies, the solution facilitates efficient reimbursement and maintains program integrity. The innovative new solution maximizes the efficiency of child nutrition programs.

“The USDA Foods program is a complex, sequential process. Each stakeholder has a responsibility to ensure the integrity and effectiveness of the program,” said Matthew Essner, Director of Sales at LINQ and former Director of USDA Food Distribution for Missouri schools. “With our new FDP solution, states can strengthen their program by ensuring every stakeholder is informed and has full transparency. “

USDA’s food distribution programs strengthen the nutrition safety net through the disbursement of USDA Foods and other nutrition assistance to children, low-income families, emergency feeding programs, Indian reservations, and the elderly. However, the programs are complex and difficult to manage, especially as child nutrition programs continue to see pandemic-induced challenges, including supply chain issues, labor shortages and inflation. LINQ FDP supports child nutrition directors by streamlining the management of the following programs:…Read More

How schools can become air quality champions this year

The COVID-19 pandemic affected every aspect of our lives for more than two years, but perhaps the hardest hit population were children who suddenly found themselves unable to go to school. This was disruptive not only from an educational standpoint, but socially, as well. That’s why school districts have done everything in their power so that children can experience a normal 2022–2023 school year. But that can only happen if superintendents make safety a top priority to prevent coronavirus outbreaks that could derail their carefully planned back-to-school plans. And it all starts with air quality. 

This isn’t just a local issue. Over the coming months, the Biden administration will be honoring and highlighting school districts who are excelling in their efforts to improve indoor air quality. It’s a great opportunity for leaders to be recognized for their amazing work, and to instill confidence in a public that is still skeptical that the worst days of the pandemic are behind us. 

According to a recent statement from the White House, in addition to vaccines, boosters, and COVID tests, one of the pillars of keeping schools open is, “helping schools plan and implement indoor air quality improvements.” Schools will have access to federal funds to optimize ventilation through inspection, repairs, upgrades, and replacements in their HVAC systems, as well as installing new systems that facilitate better ventilation. …Read More

How your communication strategies create safe schools

School district leaders have no higher priority than to create secure and informed campus environments. Having a campus-wide communication ecosystem is imperative. Being able to initiate a controlled emergency notification protocol to alert, notify and monitor directly from a mobile device, classroom audio system, or interactive flat panel is essential.

Join an eSchool News panel of experts, including Brent Thrasher, Instructional Technology Coordinator at Overton County Schools and Todd Eddy from Galaxy Next Generation, on October 6 as they discuss how to make better decisions, prevent risk, and strengthen communication between faculty, administration, and first responders during an active threat.

Register now!…Read More

Frontline Education and interviewstream Form Official Partnership to Strengthen K-12 Recruiting and Hiring Strategies

Malvern, Pa. and Chicago, Ill. (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Frontline Education, a leading provider of administration software purpose-built for educators in K-12, and interviewstream, a market-leading video interviewing solution, today announced a strategic partnership that will strengthen the recruiting and hiring efforts of K-12 districts. The partnership will make interviewstream Frontline’s recommended video interviewing partner providing clients early access to best-in-class integrations, functionality and features. To date, many Frontline and interviewstream clients have successfully leveraged the integrations to streamline the hiring process. Access to the joint solution will equip K-12 organizations with the right tools, data and insights to find the best candidates quickly and to make effective hiring decisions, which will ultimately contribute to greater student outcomes. 

With the Frontline Recruiting and Hiring solution, school leaders are able to proactively engage with jobseekers, increase their applicant pool and hire the best candidates efficiently and effectively. interviewstream’s platform offers live and on-demand virtual interviews via web browser and SMS/text to streamline and expedite the recruiting process. Integration of the two solutions optimizes the hiring process by expanding geographical reach and attracting candidates from anywhere; providing a more candidate-friendly interviewing process; leveraging actionable market insights; and collaborating with peer groups, all while filling open positions with qualified talent. 

“interviewstream and Frontline are like-minded and mission-driven companies that place the needs of K-12 school leaders at the center of our strategies,” said Mark Friedman, Chief Marketing Officer of Frontline Education. “Our deepened partnership with interviewstream is evidence of our strategy to provide solutions and services that help school leaders address some of the most pressing challenges facing K-12 education today, with persistent staff shortages near or at the top of the list.”…Read More

How 3 past Hero Awards winners navigated COVID

The eSchool News K-12 Hero Awards program, sponsored by JAR Systems and SAP Concur, has returned for 2022 and recognizes the dedicated efforts of education professionals across K-12 departments, including IT, curriculum, instruction and administration.  The nomination period runs from June 27 – September 1, 2022.

“The great education beta test brought on by the pandemic has resulted in discoveries and innovations across education — from distance learning and closing the digital divide, to addressing the need for diversity, equity, and inclusion in schools, and so much more,” said Kevin Hogan, eSN’s editor-at-large. “I’d like to encourage everyone to participate in this year’s Hero Awards, so your real-life challenges and successes can be celebrated and shared with the education community.”

As nominations come in from across the country, let’s take a look at last year’s winners and the amazing efforts they put in to keep learning accessible for students, teachers, and staff during an unprecedented global pandemic.…Read More

The critical link between scholastic esports and career pathways education

When I first approached my administration back in August 2021 about implementing a scholastic esports program at school, I had imagined facing significant opposition to the idea, and, in preparation, had rehearsed my talking points and done my research in order to be persuasive.  I was prepared to talk about the connections to STEM learning, the opportunity to engage otherwise disengaged students, the inclusive nature of gaming, the research behind gamification and game-based learning, and more. 

None of that was necessary, however, as my school principal was extremely supportive in my effort to implement scholastic esports at the school and, more importantly, to use the program to teach students transferable skills while simultaneously encouraging them to explore related career pathways.

I began my esports program with a focus on social-emotional well-being using resources from NASEF to structure initial lessons.  Before jumping into the competitive aspects of esports and gaming, we spent three weeks discussing the importance of positive mental health and the negative effects associated with some online gaming cultures.  This included discussions of toxicity and online “trash talk” of opponents, as well as the impact on one’s emotional well-being and overall confidence as a result of being repeatedly subjected to such toxicity. …Read More