TRACK IT FORWARD ANNOUNCES INTEGRATION WITH CLEVER SINGLE SIGN-ON

OAKLAND, Calif. – Track it Forward, a leader in volunteer time tracking software, just announced their new integration with the most widely used school single sign-on platform, Clever. Track it Forward is also the first volunteer time tracking app to be listed in the Clever Library.

Schools can effectively track service hours by implementing this easy-to-use volunteer time tracking software. The new integration with Clever will make it easier than ever for students to log community service hours and for teachers and administrators to track progress toward requirements and awards.

Track it Forward allows school districts and teachers to set up custom categories for different types of community service, and students can view their progress toward milestones, or service hour goals. In addition, students can submit verification of volunteer work completed onsite, like signatures, selfies, and GPS locations.…Read More

Arizona Department of Education Names 95 Percent Group an Approved K-3 Reading Improvement Program

Lincolnshire, Ill. – 95 Percent Group LLC, a leading provider of literacy solutions and instructional strategies for K-12 schools nationwide, announced today that the Arizona Department of Education approved its 95 Phonics Core Program™ as a supplemental literacy curriculum and its Phonological Awareness Lessons, Phonics Lesson Library™ and Phonics Chip Kit as early literacy intervention resources. Schools in Arizona can now find 95 Percent Group’s evidence-based products on their state list of reading improvement programs and begin using them immediately. 

The approval was based upon new, state-reviewed efficacy research confirming that 95 Percent Group’s foundational reading products meet Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Level 1-3 evidence requirement for reading instruction. The criteria were established by the Arizona Department of Education as part of its Move On When Reading initiative, an effort to provide all readers with specific, targeted instruction and interventions so that they are reading at or above grade level by the end of the 3rd grade. 

“95 Percent Group believes that evidence-based reading instruction is essential in schools. We have long invested in research that demonstrates the efficacy of our offerings,” said Brad Lindaas, Chief Executive Officer. “The Arizona Department of Education has been a key partner for us for many years, and today’s news will only strengthen our ability to support educators state-wide in promoting the development of early reading skills for all students. With this development, we expect it will be easier for more districts in Arizona to learn about and benefit from our evidence-based products,” he added. …Read More

Successful edtech impacts more than just teachers and students

In this episode of Innovations in Education, hosted by Kevin Hogan:

  • 4 ways library media specialists lead digital transformations in districts
  • 6 back-to-school tips for virtual district leaders
  • Back office innovations: Devising a more dynamic workflow

…Read More

4 ways library media specialists lead digital transformations in districts

During the pandemic era of “emergency teaching,” school systems across my state and around the country made deep investments in edtech resources.  However, as we move into what some call the post-pandemic era, education stakeholders are searching for strategies to ensure that edtech investments continue to pay dividends.

In New Hampshire, library media specialists are playing a key role in driving edtech ROI. The state Department of Education has made excellent investments in edtech resources, and together with iLearn New Hampshire, has rolled out the Canvas LMS by Instructure, the Kaltura platform for media hosting, Zoom video conferencing, and Discovery Education’s digital K-12 platform to schools statewide.

Led by the NH Library Media Specialist Association, the state’s K-12 library professionals have engaged in dialogue around how they can ensure their school system can maximize the state’s edtech investment in their school system. Each participant approached this conversation assuming everyone else in the group had it all figured out or worked in a district that did. However, what we quickly discovered was that we were all grappling with the same issues. So, we worked to identify some common approaches to maximizing edtech ROI in our own district or school setting.…Read More

School libraries are disappearing when students need them most

This story was originally published by Chalkbeat. Sign up for their newsletters at ckbe.at/newsletters.

In 2014, I got my first teaching job at a brand new high school in Detroit. The building had once been an elementary school with a fully functioning library. There was even a built-in card catalog. Now, though, it was empty, and the position of librarian didn’t exist. When we held a community book drive to fill the shelves, we ended up with a ramshackle collection of old, random, age-inappropriate books, some print encyclopedias, and an eclectic mix of cookbooks.

Two years later, that room had become a dumping ground for unused supplies, and the school football team frequently used it as a meeting space. The bookshelves were disorganized, their alphabetization long ago destroyed. In fact, not a single area school I have worked at in the past nine years has had a functioning library. …Read More

Vector Solutions Releases New Student Safety & Wellness Courses to Address Topics of Concern for Students Today

Tampa, FL – June 16, 2022 – Vector Solutions, the leading provider of training and software solutions to help schools make their operations and communities safer, smarter, and better, has created a new set of online courses for students focusing on important safety topics such as trauma awareness, dating violence, human trafficking, and more. The courses are the latest addition to Vector’s award-winning library of Student Safety & Wellness Courses.

The short online video lessons help schools teach and promote discussions about important safety, wellness, and social and emotional learning topics that have a big impact on individual students and the school community. The new collection of courses includes:

  • Active Assailant Preparedness
  • Dating Violence Awareness
  • Human Trafficking Awareness
  • Sexual Abuse Awareness
  • Trauma Awareness

Each course is broken into short, age-appropriate modules for grades 9-12 and grades 6-8. The courses will be available for schools to implement at the start of the 2022-2023 school year.…Read More

Gale’s Political Extremism and Radicalism Series Wins 2022 SIIA CODiE Award

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. – June 16, 2022 Gale, part of Cengage Group, is thrilled to announce that its Political Extremism and Radicalism series has been named the best Library Reference or Educational Database of 2022 as part of the annual SIIA CODiE Awards. The CODiE Awards recognize the companies producing the most innovative education technology products across the country and around the world. This marks the second consecutive year that a Gale Primary Sources archive has won a CODiE award in the best Library Reference or Educational Database category.

“We are honored to have Political Extremism and Radicalism recognized as a CODiE award winner,” said Terry Robinson, senior vice president of Gale global academic. “Our mission is to empower the discovery of knowledge and insights and this recognition is further confirmation of the innovation and value Gale Primary Sources brings to enriching the research experience for students and faculty.”

Political Extremism and Radicalism is an award-winning archive series available on the Gale Primary Sources platform that provides insight on unorthodox groups and movements from both the right and left of the political spectrum through providing digital access to rare, hard-to-find primary sources supporting the study of activism, cultural studies, political science, policy studies, gender studies, sexuality, race, religion, civil rights and many other related areas of research. Scholars and researchers can analyze the rhetoric, ideology and evolution of fringe, right and left-wing groups to better understand their impact on today’s mainstream politics as well as broader society.…Read More

K-12 Students Access 100 Million+ Digital Books from their Schools with Sora Reading App

CLEVELAND – June 7, 2022 – Digital book access for reading and listening for K-12 students has reached a milestone. Students using the free Sora student reading app have now accessed more than 100 million books from their school’s digital collections since Sora launched in 2018. Sora is the award-winning student reading app available in more than 53,000 schools worldwide.

As schools transition to increased use of digital books and reading technologies, educators and school librarians are creatively integrating digital titles and Sora into curriculum programs and pleasure reading. For example, educators use Sora to connect students with their local public library for additional age-appropriate materials through Public Library CONNECT. Also, educators can create their own digital book clubs for students as well as encourage involvement in regional or global programs. Finally, educators can serve those with print or reading disabilities effectively via digital audio, and encourage students to spend more time reading by leveraging Sora’s badges and achievements.

Through Sora and a school-managed account, students have convenient and safe access to age-appropriate ebooks, audiobooks, digital comic books and more from their school’s hand-selected collection. Noteworthy data regarding the 100 million books milestone:…Read More

4 innovative online learning practices educators should keep

Over the past two years, education systems across the nation have been challenged with oscillating shifts, from classroom learning to remote and online learning, and even hybrid approaches, due to COVID-19 precautions and responsiveness. Amid these ongoing changes, educators reimagined the ways they engaged with their students, and many turned to museums and other community organizations for support to better understand how to leverage our collections, educational resources, and expertise creatively for their students.

For the community of more than 300 museum educators at the Smithsonian, the sudden urgency to scrap our traditional modus operandi unleashed new levels of innovation. We reimagined how to share a vast library of artifacts, artworks, specimens, and content expertise with our audiences to best meet their teaching and learning needs.

As teachers and students return to schools and museums searching for a “new normal,” below are some practices from the past two years I know we’ll keep.…Read More

PresenceLearning and Highlights Partner To Support Children With Special Needs

NEW YORK, April 21, 2022— PresenceLearning, the leading provider of online therapy solutions for schools and clinicians, unveiled a new strategic partnership with Highlights, the children’s media brand known for their beloved Highlights magazine.  

This new collaboration marks Highlights’ first entry into online therapy in support of children with special needs. Speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists, and behavioral and mental health professionals using PresenceLearning’s proprietary platform now have access to an enhanced digital library featuring a curated collection of more than 160 content pieces from Highlights’ extensive catalog. This new content includes games, stories, and activities designed to support each child’s therapy goals for reading comprehension, handwriting, fine motor, and problem-solving skills. It also promotes social and emotional health to support the whole child by educating and nurturing well-rounded and confident children—a core philosophy of Highlights.

When children carry over content experiences from their therapy sessions into their play at home, it helps them to make connections and practice skills that can support their progress. By incorporating familiar characters and fun, purposeful activities into therapy, clinicians have the potential to create more dynamic therapy experiences. With the addition of Highlights content, PresenceLearning continues to invest in brand name, digital content that helps providers personalize and enliven each student’s session. …Read More