NOACSC Quarterly Newsletter

1st Quarter - 2023

NOACSC Community,

I hope you were able to enjoy a restful winter break!


As we move into a new year, we wanted to take a moment reflect on 2022. Recently we celebrated the retirements of EMIS support staff Sheila Rowe and Carolyn Winhover. They worked a combined 62 years at NOACSC! We are grateful for their years of service to our districts, and we celebrate their retirement!


2022 brought a lot of change to our organization, including changes on our staff. New to NOACSC in 2022 were:


  • Ben Thaxton, Executive Director
  • Brenda Core, Treasurer
  • Aundrea Fricke, Fiscal Liaison
  • Sherry Grieser, EMIS Liaison
  • Chris Zacharias, Student Services Liaison


Even though we added many new staff, we have been able to maintain the same level of quality support that you have come to expect. This is due to the service-oriented culture that has always been at the core of our organization.


We also held our first membership meeting since 2018, which was centered on cybersecurity and insurance. There was a tremendous turnout, and the feedback was extremely positive.


We look forward to new opportunities in the new year and are excited to continue to partner with you to educate the students of our area.


Wishing you a happy and healthy 2023!

Ben Thaxton

Executive Director

Celebrating Carolyn and Sheila

❄️☃️Team Updates☃️❄️

Student Services

In Student Services, we are already preparing for the 2023-24 school year. We have built a new and improved School Year Initialization (SYI) survey, and the link has already been sent out to those on our SIS mailing list. This link will take you to a MS Office Forms survey, where you answer a series of questions about the ProgressBook setup needs for each building in your district for the upcoming year. This SYI process has to be completed by NOACSC before any student scheduling can begin at the district or building level.


Some of the questions, and the required responses, have changed from the way they appeared in the past surveys, so please make sure you read the directions carefully for each question. If any questions or concerns arise in filling out this survey, please contact Doug Norton (X107) in Student Services for assistance.


Once the survey has been submitted to us, and your building’s initialization has been completed, the person who submitted the survey will receive an email confirmation and a request to review the areas of StudentInformation that SYI has set for the 23-24 school year. An important part of the SYI process is setting the school calendar, so if your building’s calendar is only tentative or pending board approval when submitting the survey, please note that information in your survey.


On our training calendar, we have an upcoming session on the Batch Scheduling process on Jan. 26, 2023, from 9am-noon. This session will cover the basics of using the StudentInformation Batch Scheduler for processing student course requests, and creating course schedules. Administrators, guidance counselors, and staff who deal with course requests and creating/editing student schedules at the secondary level could benefit from this session. It will be offered both in-person at the NOACSC office, and in Zoom online format, though we encourage people who are using the Batch Scheduler for the first time to come to the in-person session, if at all possible. Sign up at the NOACSC (noaocsc.org) website by clicking on the “Sign Up for Training” link at the top of the page. Participants are welcome to stay after the in-person session for individual assistance, or to just work in the uninterrupted quiet of our training room!

EMIS Services

We are so appreciative of Sheila and Carolyn and we celebrate their retirement! Their knowledge, experience, care, and professionalism will be missed by all. In preparation for their retirement, Sherry was added to the team this summer and Noah began cross training in the fall. Both have been preparing, along with Heather, to continue the top-notch service and knowledge you have come to know and expect from our team.


There is an upcoming training on January 4 for Troubleshooting the Teacher Licensure Course Status Report. The training will run from 9:00-noon and includes in-person and online options. To sign up for the training, view our training calendar here.


CrossCheck

We now have 25 districts who have implemented EMIS CrossCheck. CrossCheck is a data verification tool designed to allow schools to dig deeper into their EMIS data using real-time data. If you are interested in learning more, contact a member of our EMIS team. The cost is $1 per student with a minimum cost of $1,500 and a maximum cost of $3,500.

Fiscal Services

Calendar Year End - As calendar year-end is in full swing, the NOACSC fiscal team has been quite busy. We offered a user group meeting in October and followed it with calendar year-end training to all districts for the USAS and USPS software. We are in the process of printing & shipping approximately 20,000 W2’s for our districts. Due to staff changes at districts, the fiscal staff has also been very busy working through transitions of treasurers and payroll staff. We have run payroll for multiple districts as staff has changed, as well as training the new staff. We have many users tackling calendar year-end for the first time which leads to many questions. We currently have 11 new treasurers at districts and many payroll staff as well. The fiscal staff has closed two district’s payroll and ran their W2’s for calendar year end as well as closing NOACSC’s payroll and running their W2’s. All of this while handling calendar year-end questions from the districts. This has been a lot of work, but the fiscal team has taken it all in stride. Just when you think it will calm down, another district has a change. We are very appreciative of all the kind words and patience as we work through this busy season and as always if you need attention quicker than we are responding to a ticket, please pick up the phone and give us a call.


Speaking of Change:

Informing NOACSC of District staff changes in the treasurer’s office is really pertinent

  1. Please notify NOACSC of any staff changes in the treasurer’s office that require USAS, USPS, file archive, or fiscal archive access.
  2. NOACSC needs to deactivate the prior treasurer and create accounts for USAS, USPS, and Fiscal Archive for all treasurers. Sometimes the prior treasurer needs access for a little while and therefore the original employees account may not be inactivated immediately. Please make sure NOACSC is informed when to deactivate the prior treasurer’s accounts. For this, an email will suffice.
  3. Please destroy any Classic forms that you have on file, those are no longer used.
  4. The applications for USAS and USPS can be found on our website under Fiscal Services-Redesign-Account Authorization Form.

Here is a link to the form: Redesign Access Form (noacsc.org)


Multi-Factor Authentication is currently being tested in Continental schools, Kalida schools, and NOACSC. The good news is we are able to set MFA to allow your device to be a “trusted device” through DUO, which means an end user will only have to approve MFA once every 24 hours. This will save users the frustration of having to approve MFA each time they log into USAS or USPS. Our goal was to limit the number of times/days the treasurer’s staff would be required to log in and approve MFA but still give the security to suffice cyber-security insurance needs. The Fiscal team wants to thank the Tech team for their help with this process. Every time we give them a challenge they rise to the occasion. We feel this will give us the security we need and create the least pain to the end-users. (Reminder: this will not affect requisition users. They will not be required to use MFA.)


The EMIS Period L deadline is January 31, 2023. We have helped many through their errors. If you have any errors and need guidance, please let us know.


A few procedures that cause confusion for Districts are passwords and custom roles.


Passwords

  1. A Treasurer may reset USAS and USPS passwords for staff in USAS and USPS, or NOACSC can do it for a treasurer. The Superintendent may also make a request to NOACSC to reset a password as well or a district may have other designees that may make a password reset request. Many times, this person is the Assistant Treasurer or Tech Coordinator. To designate someone other than the Treasurer or Superintendent to reset a password, NOACSC needs to have it in writing, an email will suffice.
  2. When logging into USAS and USPS with a new account or with a reset password, leave the username and password blank and select the “Change Password" option. (See screenshot) When the box pops up, enter the username and password that NOACSC assigned. Then, a new password of the user’s choice can be entered and verified. The password will need to be a minimum of 8 characters containing at least a number/letter, at least 1 uppercase and not something used in the past.
Remind staff to not share an account or passwords.


Custom Roles

  1. 1.Custom Roles can be created with the proper paperwork completed. A phone call will not suffice. This is done on page 2 of the USAS or USPS account form. At the bottom of page 2 there is a selection and then a space for an explanation of the Custom Role that is to be created.
  2. 2.Please note Fiscal Archive is the where the Classic reports are stored. https://fiscal-archive.noacsc.org/login File Archive access is access to Redesign reports run and saved to File Archive. File archive is a custom role.

As Always: Our support email is: fiscal.support@noacsc.org, our phone number is: 419 228-7417 option 3 is for fiscal.

Network Services

New Year means time for more secure passwords.


Here are some tips to create a more secure password:


  • Use passwords that contain uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers 0 through 9, and non-alphanumeric characters
  • Do not use repetitive or sequential characters (e.g. ‘aaaaaa’, ‘abc123’).
  • Do not use password including usernames/full name and their derivatives.
  • Do not use the same password across multiple sites/accounts.


The chart below is form MS-ISAC – Calculation time is based on current available PC desktops. Hackers using specialized servers reduces that time dramatically.


To calculate the entropy (strength) of a password, the character set is raised to the power of the password length. There are 26 uppercase, 26 lowercase, 10 digit, and 33 ASCII-printable symbols available on the average keyboard. A computer can guess over 1 billion passwords per second.

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NOACSC Training Calendar

Check out our updated training calendar for all of the 2022-23 training opportunities. Our staff is always available for individual trainings, both on site and at your district. Contact a team member today to schedule your individualized training!

2022 Membership Meeting

NOACSC held our first membership meeting since 2018 in November at the Lima Civic Center. The meeting was centered on cybersecurity and cyber insurance. Speakers included MCOECN CEO Geoff Andrews, Ohio Representative Susan Manchester, and Hylant VP of Risk Management Travis Thompson. Breakfast was sponsored by Stolly Insurance. Thank you for joining us for a great day of learning and networking!

📅Important Dates

  • January 2 - Office Closed (New Year's Day)
  • January 16 - Office Closed (MLK Jr. Day)
  • January 30 - Public hearing for potential employment of retired employee
  • February 14-16 - Ohio Education Technology Conference (Columbus)
  • February 20 - Office Closed (President's Day)
  • February 28 - Board of Directors Meeting at 9:30 a.m. in Board Room

💻GenYES Ohio

Do you use students to support the education technology in your districts? Have you considered this in the past but have not known where to start?


GenYES Ohio from INFOhio is a powerful program where students become Student Technology Leaders (STLs) at their school. In GenYES Ohio, STLs…

  • Learn about technology through projects created to support their school’s tech integration goals
  • Gain communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and leadership skills
  • Support teachers and peers by providing mentoring, tech support, and practical leadership to support learning


GenYES Ohio can be implemented as a class, club, gifted program...whatever you can imagine. GenYES has a curriculum, certificate and community of practice for elementary, middle or high school.


For more information about GenYES Ohio, visit https://www.genyes.org/. For additional questions, contact Ben at ben@noacsc.org.

Help ensure every Ohioan has access to high-speed internet!

The State of Ohio is working to make sure every Ohioan has access to high-speed internet. We need your help!


We want to improve newly released federal maps showing internet availability and speed in Ohio. From now through Jan. 13, 2023, you can help provide crucial feedback to the federal government that will ensure Ohio receives as much support as possible to expand high-speed internet.


You can help spread the word to all in your community and throughout the state in multiple ways:


  1. Check the reported availability of internet at your home address by going to broadbandmap.fcc.gov. If the provider information should be updated, submit a challenge to dispute the information presented. If you need a step-by-step guide, you can find an informational video at this link. Please complete this assessment by Jan. 13, 2023.
  2. Share this message with your friends and family! If they do not have high-speed internet available at their homes, help them complete Step 1.
  3. Share the attached poster on your social media accounts.
  4. Share this opportunity the next time you attend a community event (for example, your place of worship, community meetings, town halls).


Note: If you, or anyone you know, needs help reviewing the Ohio information in the federal map or submitting a challenge against the reporting, you can follow this step-by-step guide here. You may also reach out to your local library branch.


Note: Within 60 days of submitting a challenge, an Internet Provider may reach out to you by phone or email to gather additional information about your internet situation.


For answers to any questions, email broadbandohio@development.ohio.gov

NOACSC

Proudly serving and supporting education across 11 counties in Northwest and West Central Ohio!