LINQ K-12 Customers Anticipated to Serve Nearly 4 Billion Meals to Students in Fiscal Year 2022

WILMINGTON, N.C. (PRWEB) — LINQ, creator of leading nutrition software solutions, today shares that its Nutrition customers’ usage data shows that nearly 4 billion meals were served to students in fiscal 2022 reflecting a 44 percent increase over the 2.7 billion meals served in fiscal 2021. LINQ Nutrition customers supported serving these meals while managing their reimbursements through state and federal nutrition programs.

The USDA reports on the  overall number of meals served to students through a variety of nutrition programs with reimbursements of almost $9 billion to schools in fiscal 2021. Through LINQ Nutrition solutions, customers across the country can successfully manage their school nutrition programs, limiting food waste, nourishing students, and educating them on the importance of nutrition.

“We’re proud that we’ve enabled our customers to easily order, plan and provide students nutritious meals while getting reimbursed through state and federal programs,” said Brandy Keller, Senior VP of Product at LINQ. “Knowing that districts have been able to successfully manage their nutrition programs through LINQ, especially during the challenges of the last couple of years, reaffirms that we are accomplishing what we set out to do every day.”…Read More

COVID-era teletherapy authorizations are expiring, but the problem persists

COVID-19 safety guidance has been relaxed and schools have returned to in-person learning, but it’s not yet time to breathe a sigh of relief. Many schools continue to encounter challenges in effectively serving their students, faced with special education staff shortages, backlogs of evaluations, and a youth mental health crisis.

Before the pandemic, a complex web of restrictions limited the ability of schools to leverage online services. From professional associations to state licensure boards, virtual therapy and evaluation services were discouraged or prohibited. In some cases, new graduates were prevented from obtaining their necessary practice hours through remote work. Many states imposed extensive barriers to allowing a licensed therapist to serve students across a state border, slowing down the ability to serve students through teletherapy.

These boards and associations then moved quickly to lift restrictions and clarify guidance to prioritize serving children in need. But as often happens in times that call for rapid action, these changes were made with a short-term mentality. Most of the removal of barriers to teleservices was done through temporary waivers and allowances, rather than taking action to permanently include remote and online services as a solution to serving the growing number of students with special education or mental health needs. These decision makers did not imagine the long-lasting impact of the pandemic, and they did not anticipate the evolution of educational services to a more technology-forward model.…Read More

Board of Education President Joyce S. Wilkerson Receives The Benjamin Elijah Mays Lifetime Achievement Award

PHILADELPHIA – Board of Education President Joyce S. Wilkerson received the Benjamin Elijah Mays Lifetime Achievement Award today for her longstanding commitment to the educational needs of urban school children. The Council of Urban Boards of Education (CUBE) presents this award each year to recognize current or former school board members who have made a difference for the students they serve. 

During her six-year tenure with the School District, Ms. Wilkerson guided the School District’s transition from the state-controlled School Reform Commission to the locally controlled Board of Education in 2018. The Board then oversaw the transformation of a District in fiscal and academic distress to one that improved educational outcomes for students, while it developed strong financial management, attaining an investment grade rating from Moody’s Investor Services for the first time since 1977.

Under Ms. Wilkerson’s leadership, the Board has developed partnerships that have generated additional support for students and has made investments to advance the Board’s strategic plan, known as Goals & Guardrails. In 2019, Ms. Wilkerson led the Board’s work to create and implement Goals & Guardrails, a plan designed to increase student achievement while providing the necessary conditions that support learning. …Read More

How to keep your students weird

Some years ago, when I was still working as a teacher, I had a student come to me in a state of distress. Like many young people her age, she was having trouble fitting in. Everything from her hair to her clothes to her overall demeanor made her stand out, and as a result, some of her fellow students had taken to calling her a “weirdo.” I am not proud of everything that I’ve done in education, but I am proud of what I told her next. I told this student the truth.

I told her that she WAS weird – and that all of the best people are. I told her she was one of my favorite students because of what made her unique. I told her I would do everything I could to make the school safer for weirdos like her, and that in the outside world, all the great advancements came from people who didn’t fit in.

Every educator knows that weirdness is what makes our students grow. After all, curiosity, creativity, and critical thought don’t bloom in a stagnant mind. So instead of wringing our hands over the social ecosystem, let’s encourage our students to think weirder.…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

How this eSN Hero Awards winner helps at-risk students turn their lives around

One of three eSN K-12 Hero Awards winners and nominated by Ripple Effects, Ann Hughes was selected for her dedication to struggling students and the innovative ways she helps these students succeed.

The challenges that students face at Linda Tutt Learning Center in Sanger, Texas are tough. Ann Hughes is tougher.

As she told the Houston Chronicle earlier this year, “I bet on the outsider because when I win, I want to win big.”…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 a higher-ed partnership transformed student mental health services at our school

It’s a given that students will experience stress as they move through school. Learning new concepts, completing assignments and taking tests, and navigating social experiences all contribute to normal stress. But today, our students are struggling with much, much more. And too much stress has dangerous implications for student mental health and well-being.

Anxieties related to lockdowns, school violence, COVID, and family issues have been shown to increase students’ stress levels and can leave them in such a state that they are unable to learn.

In my role as the principal of Salt Lake Center for Science Education-Bryant Middle School in Salt Lake City, I have witnessed first-hand the impact that elevated stress levels have had on our students’ well-being.…Read More

5 safeguarding tips for schools this year

Criminal cyber groups have made it abundantly clear that there is no type of organization they will not target–the more vulnerable they are, the easier it will be to victimize. Unfortunately for us, the organizations most at risk are often public institutions. A combination of lack of resources and dependence on legacy networks creates the perfect storm for exploitation. Of all public organizations, education has the most significant difficulties to overcome.

In 2021, ransomware attacks cost US schools over $3 billion in damages and an incalculable impact on teachers’ and children’s lives. City officials and state lawmakers must ask themselves: What can I do to protect my constituents? As a former CIO for the state of Arizona, I have pondered the same questions and understand how stressful the responsibility can be.

Since then, I have helped hundreds of private companies and government departments fortify their security postures in an increasingly hostile security environment. In this article, I would like to share the five most valuable practices cybersecurity personnel can implement within their school district’s or university’s security planning.…Read More