Learn how to modernize your K-12 financial operations

Over the past several years, K-12 school districts experienced the limitations of legacy systems. With the recent government funding available for pandemic recovery, a window of opportunity opens for K-12 schools to modernize and bring resilience to their spend management systems.

Automating your school district’s spend management solution should be a top priority. Market uncertainty has shown that faculty and staff spending data is often dispersed and hard to track, meaning you are missing complete spend visibility. This lack of reliable, consistent data is leaving school districts vulnerable to risks.

Join an eSchool News panel of experts as they discuss understanding and managing your school expenditures with a single platform that captures employee spend, when and how it happens, and how investing in a digital spend management solution can help enable school districts to increase efficiency, transparency, compliance, and control.…Read More

LINQ Expands TITAN Nutrition Claims Solution to Ohio and Montana

WILMINGTON, N.C. (PRWEB) — LINQ, creator of leading nutrition program solutions, has expanded its  TITAN nutrition claims submission solution to Ohio and Montana. This expansion equips more state agencies and K-12 school districts with effective nutrition program reimbursement methods.

The claims solution integrates directly with the participating states’ claims portals, allowing district administrators to easily verify, audit and submit their claims from the TITAN platform. Claims are seamlessly submitted to the state agency, expediting reimbursement and improving the accuracy of claim submissions because districts don’t have to manually re-enter information from one system to another.

“We work very closely with each state agency and K-12 school district to understand their needs and build solutions that support the effective management of their nutrition program,” said Mike Borges, President, State & Nutrition Solutions at LINQ. “Since individuals spend a lot of time on district nutrition programs, we made sure that our solution saves time and helps education leaders navigate the complexities that come with it. This is especially important given the staffing shortages that many districts are facing.”…Read More

Why universal screening is a more equitable identifier of gifted and talented students

School districts have historically relied on a referral-based process to identify students for gifted and talented programming. This means that teachers or parents nominate their students to take selected achievement and/or cognitive aptitude tests, frequently used as a screener for gifted and talented placement.

Unfortunately, relying on referrals alone results in overly homogenous gifted and talented programs that are predominantly white, middle class, and male. Research shows that referral-based identification excludes too many students from enrichment and advanced academic opportunities.

But districts are slowly starting to change their identification processes. Instead of using referrals to determine which students take the specified tests, districts have begun universally screening every child to make the identification process more equitable, especially when districts use cognitive aptitude tests for all students, not just a select subset.…Read More

What matters most for our special education teachers?

We all know the problem. There is a frightening shortage of special education teachers and it’s getting worse. Even prior to the pandemic, 98 percent of school districts and 49 states reported that they had a shortage and a recent RAND report found that six months into the pandemic over one-third of school leaders were experiencing special education teacher vacancies.

Compounding the problem, the number of students receiving special education services is predicted to increase sharply as students who are overdue for evaluations seek help and others who have fallen behind during COVID will need additional assessments and revised services. Increases in diagnoses, particular in children diagnosed with autism, are also having an impact. Today 1 in every 44 children in the US have autism and students with autism now account for 11 percent of all students in special education, more than double the rate of a decade ago.

The Special Education Legislative Summit Council of Administrators of Special Education has called for “all hands on deck” in addressing the shortage. Speakers at the Summit highlighted three crucial areas that need to be addressed: competitive pay, stronger recruitment, and more effective professional development. But what does effective PD look like for special educators? Is it different from what other teachers need? What works? What kind? How much? And, most importantly, what types of PD will support these educators and keep them from leaving the profession?  …Read More

Vector Solutions Adds Cybersecurity Awareness Courses to its Suite of Online Training Programs for Schools

Tampa, FL – More than 100 school districts are victimized by cyber criminals each year. To help school administrators and staff members protect their school networks and reduce the likelihood of sensitive data falling into the wrong hands, 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 set of online cybersecurity awareness training courses. The courses address topics such as creating a cybersecurity culture, preventing social engineering attacks, laws and compliance, best practices, and more. The courses will be available starting Oct. 1, 2022.

“School districts, like many other institutions, are moving more of their operations online – everything from student records management, to administrative functions, to curriculum and instruction. This can help improve efficiency, but it can also increase the risk of cybercrime,” said Rob Buelow, head of product for education at Vector Solutions. “Our goal is to help keep schools safe and operational, and our new courses will help school leaders and employees understand these risks and how to protect their systems and their data.”

The cybersecurity courses are:…Read More

Growing Number of Texas School Districts Partner with ParentSquare to Unify School-Home Communications

SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. SEPT. 22, 2022 ParentSquare, continuing its momentum in partnering with Texas schools, announces over a dozen additional independent school districts (ISD) have adopted the platform to streamline communications and empower administrators and teachers to engage every student’s family. To further support Texas districts, ParentSquare is now a platinum corporate partner in the Texas Fast Growth School Coalition.

Recent ISDs to adopt the ParentSquare school-home engagement platform for K-12 include:

  • Barbers Hill ISD
  • Brenham ISD
  • Del Valle ISD
  • Huffman ISD
  • Hutto ISD
  • Midway ISD
  • New Braunfels ISD
  • Northwest ISD
  • Odem-Edroy ISD
  • Pampa ISD
  • Roma ISD
  • Stafford MSD
  • Stratford ISD
  • Transformation Waco in Waco ISD
  • United ISD
  • Waxahachie ISD

These districts join a long list of over 60 districts in the state that have already been utilizing the benefits of ParentSquare. Through these partnerships, over a quarter million Texas families are being positively impacted by the platform features in some of the fastest growing areas in the country.…Read More

ScribFolders from Scribbles Software Helps Schools Go Paperless

Pineville, NC – Scribbles Software, a leading provider of K-12 records and enrollment software, is offering a cumulative records management system that simplifies the records access and filing process for schools.  ScribFolders allows school districts to move all of their student information files online as students matriculate, which means authorized personnel can have instant, secure online access to the information they need to support students.

“Some of the biggest pain points for school districts who use paper records management systems are space requirements, security risks, long wait times to get needed records, and dealing with the inconvenience of housing records in different systems and locations,” said Marshall Simmonds, Scribbles VP of sales. “ScribFolders solves this issue. Moving to an online records management system also helps school districts better serve their families because as records accumulate from year to year, authorized staff members can access all the information that they need to support students quickly and easily, and districts can respond more quickly to records requests.”

Scribbles Software focuses on paperless processes, data security, choice management programs, and cloud-based solutions. Its software helps schools streamline K-12 student records and enrollment through a single, accessible, cloud-based system. ScribFolders is one of several tools that support records management. It streamlines the filing process, eliminates the need for transporting files, and protects records from data losses due to human error or catastrophic events that would damage paper records.…Read More

Don’t wait to secure your endpoints from cyberattacks

As we enter a new school year, among the myriad things that instructors and administrators need to be concerned about, ransomware remains high on the list. According to the K-12 Security Information Exchange, there were 166 publicly disclosed cyber incidents affecting 162 school districts across 38 states during the 2021 calendar year.

The rise of remote learning and the use of more devices comes with a price – more endpoints mean more opportunities for potential exploitation. This isn’t a new refrain, but we continue to see challenges facing endpoint security. Cyberattacks against schools can result in closures, not to mention high and unbudgeted remediation and recovery costs.

School districts are already grappling with one of the hardest missions out there – educating our youth – and having to worry about a potential data breach can’t take away from this. Fortunately, in this situation, knowledge is power. Understanding the potential risks that your endpoints face is key to knowing what needs to happen to mitigate these risks and keep your information and systems safe.…Read More

4 ways to tackle IT workforce shortages

The Great Resignation. The War for Talent. The K-12 Staffing Crisis.

Whatever you call it, K-12 school districts have a retention problem and it’s not unique to teaching staff – superintendents, principals, nurses, bus drivers, paraprofessionals, and others are departing in droves.

Between the pandemic’s disruption on student learning, overloaded schedules, and increased workloads, staff are burned out, frustrated, and leaving for enterprise roles or retiring.…Read More