EICSD

East Irondequoit Central School District

Key Facts

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"The district has 100% teacher adoption, with teachers using Schoology for their course structure as well as their internal and external communication."

Story

East Irondequoit Advances their Digital Conversion with Schoology’s LMS

How EICSD Streamlines Communication and Collaboration with Schoology

The East Irondequoit Central School District (EICSD) is located in Monroe County, NY, adjacent to the City of Rochester. It serves a community of approximately 30,000 residents and 3,200 students covering kindergarten through 12th grade.

The Challenge

In 2012-13 EICSD launched its digital conversion initiative (read more here: http://dc.eastiron.org). This initiative was created as part of an overall goal to provide the best possible learning environment for students. As stated on EICSD’s website, “We understand that the technology available today has the power to profoundly change the way we teach, interact, and learn. This is why we firmly believe that we must integrate appropriate technology into every aspect of our work, and leverage it in every way possible. This is the foundation for our digital conversion.”

The initiative started by rolling out iPads to 16 teachers and their 300 students. As EICSD began to grow its 1:1 program, they visited other schools throughout the country to learn what was working, and not working, with their own 1:1 programs. Those visits brought back 2 main lessons:

  • EICSD needed to ensure it was providing appropriate levels of support and professional development for their teachers, as well as the digital resources necessary for high levels of student and teacher engagement
  • EICSD needed a plan to ensure that teaching practices could evolve and adapt to changes in technology

These lessons led EICSD to realize the digital conversion initiative needed to encompass more than just hardware but also the software that teachers were using. In 2014, the district started researching learning management systems (LMS).

The Decision

EICSD started researching LMS and reaching out to its partner—the Boards of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES). The district put together a selection committee of teachers, IT specialists, and administrators to evaluate Schoology, Canvas, Blackboard, Moodle, and Edmodo. The committee’s criteria was very straightforward:

  • Intuitive and easily adoptable
  • Parent connection
  • Mobile-friendly
  • Metrics and analytics
  • SSO (single sign-on) with its SIS
  • Great tech support

After receiving presentations from each company as well as lengthy trials, EICSD decided to go with a pilot of Schoology starting in February 2014. Even though it was a voluntary pilot, the district got a majority of teachers to try it out. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive. Both teachers and administrators loved how easy it was to use, how simple it was to get parents involved, and how the mobile support helped them expand their 1:1 program. The analytics helped administrators track participation and usage, validating that they would be able to see that adoption was occurring. By end of May, EICSD decided to purchase Schoology for the full year.

The Result

Less than a year later, Schoology is now an integral part of East Irondequoit. The district has 100% teacher adoption, with teachers using Schoology for their course structure as well as their internal and external communication. This has reduced the amount of negative feedback from parents since all parents have better visibility and better communication with teachers. Every parent can see exactly what their kids are working on, see how their child is performing, and have instant communication with the teacher.

Schoology is also facilitating the classroom management for EICSD’s 1:1 devices. Schoology is a single portal with all district-approved apps. It also ensures that students aren’t wandering on the internet during class time.

 

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