NOACSC Quarterly Newsletter

2nd Quarter - 2022

From the Executive Director...

I recently finished my third month as Executive Director at NOACSC. Having been an educator for nearly 22 years, the atmosphere in this work environment is much different than that of a school setting. I miss seeing students on a daily basis and also miss the wonderful teachers and support staff that I worked alongside for so many years. However, I marvel at the dedication and professionalism of the staff here at NOACSC. I know you already are aware, but your student information, financial information, and network security is in the hands of some very knowledgeable and well-respected people. In my meetings with other ITCs, they all have wonderful things to say about our staff. They truly are respected across the state. And I believe that is what makes us one of the best ITCs in Ohio. The amazing people on this staff is the reason why I am enjoying my new role here at NOACSC.


Please know that our sole desire is to serve your needs. I want your staff to have the resources that they need to provide a quality education experience for your students. We are here to serve. So if you have a need of any type, please reach out to me or our staff, and we will assist in whatever way we possibly can.


Here's to a strong finish to the 2021-22 school year!


Ben Thaxton

Executive Director, NOACSC

Ohio Education Job Board Launched

In conjunction with Ohio’s ITCs, the Management Council is excited to announce the launch of the Ohio Education Job Board for K-12 jobs in Ohio. This job board incorporates an intuitive job listing page that includes search function filters and an interactive map.

Built specifically for the education industry, the Ohio Education Job Board is the central hub for K-12 jobs in Ohio. From teachers to bus drivers to support personnel, applicants looking for a position in an Ohio school district can search by zip code, job category, grade level, and/or job type. The interactive map enables prospective applicants to see available job postings in a specific search area making it easy to find open positions in desired locations. By drilling down on the Job Board map, applicants can identify the type and number of positions that are posted in each district.


School districts posting open positions to the Ohio Education Job Board provide applicants with a positive experience through a simple search process and comprehensive offerings. With no need for districts to post positions in multiple places, the Ohio Education Job Board is a one-stop shop for prospective applicants. The new Job Board can be viewed by visiting: ohiok12jobs.schoolspring.com

911 Notification

Who in your district gets notified when 911 is called? For those districts running the 3CX phone system, an option exists to send email notifications and/or play a recorded message on the phones of designated people. Districts often want the SRO and administrators to know when 911 is called. The email message includes what extension made that call. If you would like this notification set up or if you want to check/update who receives your 911 call notification, contact the network services team. Currently a number of districts have not requested 911 notifications be set up for them.


It is also a good idea to include a test 911 call in your yearly building security drills. This is a chance to verify all is working properly, including notifications and the information the 911 operator sees. Your SRO can assist in coordinating this test with the 911 center.

Team Updates

Student Services

As we approach the end of the 21-22 school year, the Student Services team has already been busy with several tasks integral to preparations for the upcoming 22-23 school year. Our team has been helping many districts with the process of transcript setup, running and printing, and we have also spent many hours assisting in the critical task of verifying graduation requirements. The daunting process of creating student schedules has begun for many schools, and we want to remind our districts that we are here to help! No question is too small or trivial when it comes to this all-important subject. We’re always willing to help with individual training and lab sessions.


Our annual summer maintenance will begin soon, including data rollover and many other StudentInformation, GradeBook, and PowerSchool cleanups in preparation for the August opening of the 22-23 school year.


Dates for training sessions related to the 22-23 school year have not yet been established. When those dates are set, they will be published on the NOACSC website, and sent out to users through the email list of StudentInformation contacts. We are also happy to setup individual on-demand lab sessions or online meetings – just give us a call, submit a helpdesk ticket, or send us an email, and one of our Student Services team members will work out a convenient time for training with you.


School year initializations (SYI) for the 22-23 school year are proceeding apace, with a large number of districts already completed.

EMIS Services

There is very little “downtime” in the life of an EMIS Coordinator. For example, there are about 14 collections currently open that EMIS Coordinators are processing for ODE submission. Collections continually open and close throughout the year and the data is critical for funding and calculations on the Local Report Cards.

There are a number of trainings available to help. In additional to the monthly EMIS sessions by ODE, as well as their New EMIS Coordinator trainings in April, the following NOACSC trainings are coming up:


  • Troubleshooting FTE Reports – April 28th and 29th
  • FY22 EMIS “S” Checklist (Student Information users) – May 6th
  • FY22 EMIS “G” Checklist (Student Information users) – May 13th
  • Troubleshooting the Where Kids Count Reports – June 7th
  • Troubleshooting the Missing Assessment Reports – June 15th


Also, the annual Ohio Association of EMIS Professionals (OAEP) Conference is going on in Columbus on May 2nd and 3rd.

And to top things off, while working on data for the current school year, EMIS Coordinators are also learning about changes for the upcoming one! EMIS keeps Coordinators busy!

Fiscal Services

The fiscal team had a very active first quarter of 2022. Some highlights include:

  • At least one day every week since Jan. 1, fiscal has had an employee at a district training/ assisting a district with payroll and/or accounts payable
  • In the month of December 15 to January 15 fiscal members handled 583 tickets through the email ticketing system. For the week of 1/9/22 – 1/15/22 the fiscal team logged 20 hours on the phone.
  • Printed 15,000 W2’s in December and January.
  • Running NOACSC payroll and handling NOACSC’s accounting.


USAS/USPS update

  • The staff have been training district personnel on the following: payroll software training (USPS), accounting software training (USAS), inventory training (EIS), and reports training.
  • Work flows for USAS and USPS have been implemented and are available for districts to use.
  • Employee onboarding has been implemented and is now available for districts, currently working with implementing it in districts.
  • Req system within USAS Accounting software has been tested and is now available for districts to implement.


We are here to serve!

We have a very diverse skill set in our team. We have 3 licensed treasurers, including one who has spent time at a district, and a software developer. We are here to help support the following needs in addition to everyday support:


  • Custom reports
  • Payroll
  • Accounts payable
  • Interim treasurer
  • Inventory
  • Grants management


If you need help with something, please feel free to call and see if we can work something out that will help you as we know these are times when fiscal staff may have turnover and need a little extra help.


Training

  • Budget Trainings - April 27, 2022 and May 4, 2022 in-person at NOACSC office.
  • Fiscal Year-End Trainings - May 25, 2022 and May 26, 2022. Both have a morning and afternoon session and are also in-person at NOACSC office.

Network Services

The network services team has been working to reestablish in-person county technology coordinator meetings. All counties had a meeting during the first quarter of 2022. We encourage all to attend these important and collaborative meetings. If you are not sure when your county is meeting, please contact the network services team.


Cyber Security

Cyber security continues to be a focus for NOACSC and for districts. We are currently evaluating solutions for multi-factor authentication (MFA) and endpoint detection and recovery (EDR). We hope to offer solutions at a reasonable cost to districts in the very near future.


We are also developing online meetings related to cyber security measures. Look for more information to come soon.


Zoom

Zoom and Google have been working on ways to improve the Zoom experience on Chromebooks. As part of these efforts, they have jointly developed a Progressive Web App (PWA) that is now available. They will be phasing out support for the Chrome extension that is currently being used and are encouraging districts to start looking at the PWA.


This initiative was brought on by Google’s desire to end their current extension support, and move to a more advanced Progressive Web App (PWA). This App is currently available, and although there is no “drop-dead” date for end of support, Zoom is indicating this support will most likely wind down between Aug 1st and the end this calendar year. That does not mean the current app will stop working, it just means support will be minimal. Zoom also recommends that the sooner the better for this change – so perhaps as soon as the school year is over.


The new PWA will provide advanced functionality within the Zoom app, including:

• Virtual backgrounds

• Modern breakout room capabilities

• Advanced polling

• New whiteboard functionality

• Zoom Phone support


District Google Administrators will be able to centrally deploy the new PWA to student machines, using the information provided on the link below:


https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/4403637861005-Configuring-the-Zoom-for-Chrome-PWA . Per these instructions, devices will need to be on Chrome OS version 93 or higher.

Additional Info...

  • Many of you do spring cleaning of your home and office, but what about your cyber space? For some cyber spring cleaning tips, check out this article: Cyber Clean for Spring (cisecurity.org)
  • Looking for a free education technology conference? Check out SPARCCs EdTEch conference in August 2022: SPARCC EdTech Conference
  • Looking to get out of the district for summer meetings or planning sessions? You can reserve space for free here at NOACSC. As a member district, you may take advantage of our large training room to hold your meetings. To reserve your space, contact Jennifer Schwartz at jschwartz@noacsc.org.
Big picture

A little office competition!

Each year at NOACSC we hold a pie baking contest for Pi Day! Each person who wants to participate bakes a pie of their own and then the staff votes on a winner. This year's winner was Carolyn from the EMIS team! Handing her the trophy was the previous holder of the coveted Pi Day trophy, Larry from the Fiscal team.

NOACSC

Proudly serving and supporting education across 11 counties in northwest and west central Ohio!