3 critical elements of a K-12 cybersecurity strategy

Technology has significantly changed the classroom experience over the last decade, with the ubiquity of the IoT, mobile apps, and teleconferencing ushering in a new era of instruction and learning. What’s more, this sea of change shows no sign of abating—case in point, late last year Roblox announced plans to reach 100 million students in the metaverse by the end of the decade. As K-12 institutions invest in emerging technologies and platforms, it’s critical that they not overlook cybersecurity concerns.

There are numerous cybersecurity challenges emerging in the connected education age, but following are some of the most pressing:

Increasingly Sophisticated Phishing Campaigns…Read More

4 ways to improve your district’s data privacy

With K-12 school districts using cloud collaboration platforms more than ever before, the approach to data privacy in schools is looking a lot different than what administrators are used to.

Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 are keeping students and staff connected. These apps have forever impacted the way education is delivered in school.

School districts suffer from data leaks—when a student or staff member shares data outside of the school district’s domain. At the same time, school districts have become one of the most targeted organizations for cyberattacks. Regardless of whether these incidents are malicious or inadvertent, they should not be happening in the first place.…Read More

3 approaches to help students become responsible cyber citizens

Children are getting more screen time than ever—a side effect of the pandemic’s impact on our usual routines.

It’s not just the pandemic, however. Kids’ media preferences are changing as new apps and sleeker technology make it easier to stay connected (and be entertained) wherever they go. Just in the past four years, we’ve seen dramatic shifts in online video viewing, smartphone ownership, and more.

Technology and the internet are omnipresent—and today’s youth must be equipped with skills to safely consume, evaluate, and share information online—including how they interact with their peers.…Read More

Alma Announces System Upgrades to its Student Information System

Portland, Ore. (August 12, 2021) – Alma Student Information System (SIS) has updated its award-winning SIS platform with several new features to support schools and families this school year. Upgrades include the addition of Navigator to help schools transition to Alma, the App Center to integrate third party apps, and Multilingual Parent and Student Portals which allow families to use the Spanish version of the portals to register their children and access their grades. The upgrades are all available now to start the new school year.

“Alma’s upgrades make the onboarding and overall day-to-day SIS experience for schools and districts even better, and also support our mission of increasing educational equity, inclusion and family engagement,” said Andrew Herman, CEO and Founder of Alma. “If schools and districts learned anything in 2020, it’s that technology demands on educators and parents are greater than ever. We are creating tools such as the App Center to make it easier for educators to use the apps they love while using their student information system.  And we are improving access to student information for Spanish speaking families making Alma a comprehensive SIS solution for schools.”

What’s new:…Read More

5 immersive learning tools for the classroom

Immersive learning might sound like a no-brainer strategy, but it’s a superb way to ensure students are engaged in lessons and core concepts.

Augmented and virtual reality apps are excellent ways to engage students in immersive learning, while at the same time offering a fun learning experience.

Students can explore historical sites, meet sea creatures up close, and more.…Read More

5 learning apps for students with special needs

Millions of students transitioned to online and hybrid learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. While that transition was relatively easy for some students, many–including students with special needs–found it difficult or impossible to access in-school services and therapies.

While many schools returned to full in-person learning or hybrid learning, COVID-related learning loss is still a concern. There are a number of apps and online tools that can help parents and caregivers of students with special needs fill the gaps as much as possible during the summer months.

These apps can be especially helpful for parents looking for easy-to-access resources even after in-person learning resumes in the fall.…Read More

imagiLabs brings coding to teenage girls’ phones with imagiCharm wearable accessory

imagiLabs is the all-female founded Stockholm-based startup that aims to bridge the gender divide in coding with its imagiCharm: a device which can be visually customised by coding into an accompanying mobile app.

The imagiCharm’s 8×8 matrix of LEDs can be customised to display tens of thousands of different designs, such as flowers, rising suns, animals etc., based upon the Python code written by the user into the imagiLabs iOS or Android apps, which connect to the device via Bluetooth.

By using Python to change the appearance of the accessory, girls are shown the real-world applications and possibilities of programming and what physical manifestations of code can look like. …Read More

21 awesome AR and VR tools for learning

Nearly everyone has experienced augmented reality and virtual reality to some degree, and while they’re fun, AR and VR can also be incredibly powerful when integrated into classroom learning.

During an engaging ISTELive 21 session, Jennifer Hall, NBCT, an educational technology specialist with Atlanta Public Schools, outlined an abundance of AR and VR apps for students and educators.

Augmented reality is the idea that you’re bringing something into your real world and using your device to see something that isn’t actually there. Animation or 3D images come into your real world. Virtual reality is where a person is immersed in the experience, as if they’re actually there.…Read More

What makes a good digital math tool?

During the COVID-19 disruption to education, the use of edtech tools surged. In fact, according, recent research, downloads of education apps in the U.S. increased by 130 percent. 

Within this surge, math saw the biggest jump in edtech tool usage. Math has historically been board-based in the classroom and paper-based at home. And while students had used digital tools like math games and at-home practice apps, these were strictly supplemental. Over this last year, however, as a result of COVID-19, teachers and students have had to adapt to using digital math-related tools, some for the first time. 

Since March of 2020, the usage of Texthelp’s own STEM application, EquatIO, has risen by more than 150 percent. …Read More

Education needs to go back to school for cybersecurity

The education sector has not been immune to the digital revolution transforming businesses and organizations across the world. The year before the pandemic saw sky-high growth and adoption in education technology, with global edtech investments reaching €15.87 billion in 2019.

Many education institutions have their own bring your own device (BYOD) policies, while downloads of educational apps have risen by 130 percent over the past year.

Everything from laptops and mobile devices to interactive touchscreens and even virtual reality are becoming commonplace in schools districts, colleges, and universities.…Read More