Category Archive: Teacher Absence Management

Preschool Teaching Institutes Help Prepare New Teachers

New York City is plunging into its pre-K program in a big way. The program, which begins this school year, anticipates an influx of over 4,000 pre-K teachers and 53,000 students. To begin this new program, the Department of Education has partnered with the renowned Bank Street College of Education to hold three-day teaching “institutions” to help prepare new and current pre-K teachers for teaching students of diverse backgrounds and ability levels in New York City’s new pre-K program. Their ultimate goal? Teach educators to instruct using the Common Core Curriculum methodology.

New and existing schools must meet health and building specifications for preschool-aged children, and more than 50,000 students need to be recruited. However, Department of Education Chancellor, Carmen Fariña, noted the ultimate way to change the school system is to provide professional development for the thousands of new instructors. Administrators believe that by educating students with a pre-K program containing scholastic goals rather than “glorified babysitting,” characteristics that are currently in place in several pre-K programs, students will have a more solid foundation for their academic careers.

The three-day program was available to new and learned teachers and assistant teachers, and attendance was not mandatory. While the conference was led by Bank Street instructors, most meetings included small-group breakout sessions in which new teachers were paired with instructors holding more experience in teaching and proficiency. The result was an exchange of knowledge not entirely specific to curriculum, but encompassing classroom management, teaching episodes, and shared experiences. With further instructor-led sessions on teaching students with disabilities and assisting students who speak English as a second language, New York City believes this new program will increase learning of students and teachers alike.

What programs does your school district have in place to prepare teachers for the beginning of the school year? How do these programs work? Is attendance mandatory? What would you change or add to improve your district’s teacher management software? We would love to read and share your responses.

How Leadership Changes Affect Teacher Absenteeism

The 2011-12 school year in Central Texas was a difficult one for Hays Consolidated Independent School District. Five school principals changed locations, and Assistant Superintendant Carolyn Hitt wanted to know if the change in leadership affected absenteeism within those five locations differently than in the other schools where principals remained constant. Ms. Hitt asked the eSchool Solutions Analytics Consulting Team to conduct an in-depth analysis on the teacher absence management data recorded in SmartFind Express to determine if the number of absences corresponded with leadership change.

The time frame analyzed included the remaining months an outgoing principal was on campus until a few months after a new principal was installed. Their findings showed no drastic fluctuations in the absentee rate. Two schools did note changes on teacher absenteeism, however. These changes differed from each other and, as such, are considered outliers. The first dissimilarity was an increase of personal leave days for teachers despite a decrease in total number of absences as one school’s principal exited.  The second school noted a 39% increase in employee absences when a new principal was instituted with most of these absences noted as “sick leave.”

Ms. Hitt was “pleasantly surprised” with eSchool’s teacher absence management results. She stated she believed the principals “…continued to manage absenteeism effectively–even though they’d learned they would be leaving their school for another assignment.” Ms. Hitt went on to say that the findings indicated new principals were able to maintain the same level of absenteeism as their predecessors while learning their new schools’ systems and procedures. In her opinion, this overturned the assumption that new leadership escalated teacher absenteeism.

Contact eSchool Systems when your district wants to determine what factors may be causing excess absenteeism, or to ascertain what one of the schools in your district is doing to curb teacher absenteeism. Our Analytics Consulting Team is ready to provide you with comprehensive teacher absence management programs and answer your most pressing questions.

How the Affordable Care Act will Affect Substitute Teachers

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website, was passed in 2010 with the Supreme Court upholding the law in 2012.  More succinctly entitled the Affordable Care Act, President Obama anticipated a mandate that would “put consumers back in charge of their health care”.  Several of the regulations from this bill and the Internal Revenue Service’s edicts relate specifically to part-time employees, which constitute much of the substitute teacher population.  It is now in the best interest of districts to use absence management systems and carefully track worked hours to determine the validity of part-time versus full-time employment.

If you’re already using an absence management system, do you have access to your district’s data? Have you started accessing historical and current data to assist with setting Affordable Care Act policies in your district? But we’re talking about a lot of data – and in its raw form can be difficult, time consuming, and overwhelming to average, aggregate, and filter. Consider working with an absence management expert; someone who can help you:

  • Quickly identify substitutes / groups who have exceeded 30 hours

  • Develop and implement ACA polices in your district

  • Use historical data to estimate the financial impact of the polices you put in place

  • Determine who will be eligible for benefits during the stability period

Absence management tools – like SmartFindExpress – offer the tools you need to manage the ACA process in your district – from “look-back” to “stability” to monitoring; you’ll be able to determine which substitutes are working 30 or more hours each week.

Learn more about the Affordable Care Act and how it affects substitutes by joining us at our eSchool Solutions SmartFindExpress Solutions Summit in Denver, Colorado on April 9 – 11, 2014.  As one of our key topics, eSchool Solutions promises to answer as many questions as you have concerning substitute teaching as it pertains to the Affordable Care Act, and how absence management systems can remove many of those concerns.

 

eSchool Solutions® Provides Absence Management Solutions to Additional School Districts

(Orlando, Florida – June 5, 2013) Orlando-based eSchool Solutions®, the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market, is pleased to announce that their absence management software, SmartFindExpress, has recently been selected by nine school districts looking to improve their teacher absence management. In addition, three school districts chose eSchool Solutions’ integrated professional development program, ERO (Electronic Registrar Online), for their teachers.

eSchool Solutions’ SmartFindExpress automates substitute management for school districts by filling classrooms with qualified substitute teachers, which in turn reduces lost learning days for students. eSchool Solutions’ ERO gives districts the ability to monitor the professional learning activities of teachers and other school employees.

The nine districts that recently selected SmartFindExpress include Roane County Schools in West Virginia; Jackson Madison in Tennessee; Benjamin Franklin Middle School in Virginia; Conseil Scolaire Viamonde in Ontario; Martin County in Florida, who also purchased eSchool Solutions’ ERO; Jefferson County in Kentucky, who purchased their third SFE hosted system for their Food Services department in addition to the systems they have for substitute teachers and custodians; Brevard County in Florida; Upshur County in West Virginia; and Albuquerque Public Schools in New Mexico, who purchased their second SFE hosted system for their Food Services department in addition to the one they have for substitute teachers.

“We are very proud of the success that both SFE and ERO have brought to our clients.” said Lorri Glover, Product Manager of SmartFindExpress for eSchool Solutions. “We are thrilled to see both new clients and returning clients, who know our company and rely on our software to better manage absenteeism and professional learning.”

To learn more about eSchool Solutions’ absence management and professional development solutions, please visit http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/ or call 800-776-8774.

About eSchool Solutions®
eSchool Solutions® is the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market. In 1987, the Orlando-based company revolutionized substitute management for school systems, completely changing the way districts managed substitutes and employee absences. Now, as a total solutions provider, eSchool Solutions provides a full suite of products and services designed to improve administrative efficiency and help school districts work smarter. The company serves more than 500 school systems, encompassing 29,000 schools in North America.

**This press release can also be viewed online at http://www.prlog.org/12151133-eschool-solutions-provides-absence-management-solutions-to-additional-school-districts.html and http://www.1888pressrelease.com/eschool-solutions-r-provides-absence-management-solutions-t-pr-474831.html.

Center for American Progress Report Breaks Down Teacher Absenteeism

A recent report by Raegen Miller (and the Center for American Progress) gave some interesting information about teacher absenteeism and which factors tend to make it more common in schools. The report analyzed data from 56,837 schools nationwide to find that 36% of teachers are absent more than 10 days during the school year. According to the report, the state with the lowest average of teacher absence was Utah (at 20.9%) and the state with the highest was Rhode Island (at 50.2%).

One of the most interesting parts of Miller’s report was that it offered evidence to suggest that both the type of school and the grade level affects teacher absenteeism. According to the report, teachers are absent from traditional public schools 15.2% more than teachers in charter schools. As far as the grade levels, 33.3% of high school teachers, 36.7% of middle school teachers, and 37.8% of middle school teachers were absent more than 10 days in the school year.

In addition, the timing of teacher absences falls into a pattern, with Mondays and Fridays being the most missed days. “That may be due to the fact that the contract language is just loose enough to allow or afford teachers to take time when they may not be legitimately sick,” said Timothy Duffy, head of the Rhode Island School Committee Association in a Huffington Post article about Miller’s report.

At eSchool Solutions, we provide the tools and support to effectively measure, monitor, and improve your school’s teacher absence management program. SmartFindExpress is the most powerful absence management software on the market and includes features such as a highly intuitive user interface, text-to-speech conversion, multi-language support, custom reporting, superior client support, and more. Call 800-776-8774 today to get started improving your school’s absence management program!

USA Today Features New Research on Teacher Absenteeism

A recent article featured in the USA Today highlighted a few startling facts about teacher absenteeism in the United States. According to the article, new research from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights suggests that teacher absenteeism is becoming quite problematic in the public school system.

The economic downturn has surprisingly had a positive effect on the issue. Teachers took fewer sick and personal days because of their fear of being fired. However, as the U.S. emerges from the recession, this problem may only worsen. Research compiled in 2012 by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights found that almost half of the teachers in a couple of states (including Rhode Island, Hawaii, Arkansas, New Mexico, & Michigan) missed more than 10 days in the usual 180-day school year.

Teacher absenteeism has academic and financial ramifications on public schools. It costs at least $4 billion a year for a school to find and provide substitutes for absent teachers, which usually amounts to roughly 1% of the school’s yearly budget. Even more, teacher absenteeism has been proven to lower student achievement. A study done in 2007 by Duke University estimated that for every 10 teacher absences, math achievements dropped by the same degree as if a school had replaced an experienced teacher with a beginning teacher.

“Everybody basically accepts (that) teachers are the most important school-based resource affecting student achievement,” researcher Raegen Miller said in the USA Today article.

At eSchool Solutions, we provide the tools and support needed to effectively measure, monitor, and improve your school’s teacher absence management program. Our consultants become part of your district’s team – helping you identify opportunities, scope of work and project plans for implementation. Call 800-776-8774 today to get started!

The Debate on Teacher Absenteeism

The Tribune Review recently conducted an analysis of seventy three Western Pennsylvania public school districts to find that almost $25 million was spent during the past school year to pay for substitute teachers to cover classes when full-time teachers were absent. In an era of diminishing education funding, a debate arises between teachers, who claim they are entitled to time off from their increasingly stressful jobs, and critics, who argue that teacher absenteeism hinders student achievement.

Teachers work very hard at their jobs, often spending countless hours of their own time grading papers, writing college letters of recommendation, and even tutoring students who need extra help. The state of Pennsylvania requires teachers to receive 10 paid sick days a year and most school districts also negotiate paid time off for emergencies. Many teachers value their paid time off because it gives them a chance to relax and refresh so that they can teach better when they get back into the classroom.

However, some school board members believe that the time-off policies have gone too far, particularly with the length of the school year being only 180 days. Mary Raich, who taught in the Pittsburgh Public Schools for almost 30 years and now substitutes in Indiana County, said she “never took a day off” when she was teaching full-time because “a day was always wasted.” When there is not a qualified substitute to take the place of the teacher, learning is interrupted and the level of student achievement is known to drop.

If your school district is having problems effectively managing teacher absences, look no further than eSchool Solutions. Our goal is to help eliminate those lost learning days for your students by filling teacher absences with qualified substitutes so that the students can continue their learning even when the full-time teacher is absent. Our SmartFindExpress® absence management software creates a unique teacher absence management program tailored to the specific needs of your school district. Call 1-800-776-8774 to request a demo of our products.

Two Additional School Districts in December Choose eSchool Solutions® as Solutions Provider

Orlando, FL (January 3, 2012) – Orlando-based eSchool Solutions®, the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market, is pleased to announce that their products have been chosen by two additional school districts last month. Interstate 35 Community School District in Iowa has chosen eSchool Solutions’ SmartFindExpress hosted and Florence County School District in South Carolina has chosen eSchool Solutions’ Electronic Registrar Online (ERO).

With SmartFindExpress hosted, Interstate 35 Community School District will have a customized, easy-to-use solution to better manage teacher absenteeism in their schools. SmartFindExpress is the most powerful absence management software on the market and includes features such as a highly intuitive user interface, text-to-speech conversion, multi-language support, custom reporting, superior client support, and more.

eSchool Solutions’ ERO will give Florence County School District the ability to monitor every aspect of professional development opportunities for their teachers including registration, attendance, and participation in all learning activities. With ERO, the school district can define groups of related learning activities and create specific learning programs tailored to individual employees or groups of employees.

“We are thrilled that both Interstate 35 Community School District and Florence County School District have chosen our products for their schools,” said Lorri Glover, Product Manager of SmartFindExpress for eSchool Solutions. “We are confident that by using our products, they will be better equipped to manage teacher absenteeism and professional development in their districts.”

To learn more about eSchool Solutions’ absence management and professional development solutions, please visit http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/ or call 800-776-8774.

About eSchool Solutions®
eSchool Solutions® is the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market. In 1987, the Orlando-based company revolutionized substitute management for school systems, completely changing the way districts managed substitutes and employee absences. Now, as a total solutions provider, eSchool Solutions provides a full suite of products and services designed to improve administrative efficiency and help school districts work smarter. The company serves more than 500 school systems, encompassing 29,000 schools in North America.

 

**This press release can also be viewed online at http://www.prlog.org/12052632-two-additional-school-districts-in-december-choose-eschool-solutions-as-solutions-provider.html and http://www.1888pressrelease.com/two-additional-school-districts-in-december-choose-eschool-s-pr-447316.html.

7 School Districts Recently Selected eSchool Solutions® as Absence Management Software Provider

Orlando, FL (October 16, 2012) - Orlando-based eSchool Solutions®, the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market, is pleased to announce that 7 school districts recently selected their company to provide teacher absence placement and professional development management solutions.

eSchool Solutions provides the most powerful absence management software on the market that automatically ensures the most highly qualified substitutes are placed into classrooms by allowing districts to set criteria (skill sets, location, contract guidelines, etc.) to control how substitute teachers are selected for jobs. eSchool Solutions’ software, SmartFindExpress, was recently selected by the Beardsley School District in California, Macon County Schools in North Carolina, Montgomery Public Schools in North Carolina, the Burlington Township Board of Education in New Jersey, and Lawrence Public Schools in Massachusetts.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to help these school districts manage teacher absenteeism more effectively,” said Lorri Glover, Product Manager of SmartFindExpress for eSchool Solutions. “SmartFindExpress is designed to save school districts money and help fight lost-learning days for students.”

In addition to these five school districts selecting SmartFindExpress, two additional districts selected eSchool Solutions’ Electronic Registrar Online (ERO). ERO is a cost-effective, user-friendly web application that offers districts the ability to monitor every aspect of professional development opportunities for teachers. The districts that selected ERO include the Sequoia United High School District and Redlands United School District, both in California.

To learn more about eSchool Solutions and their absence management solutions, please visit http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/ or call 800-776-8774.

About eSchool Solutions®
eSchool Solutions® is the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market. In 1987, the Orlando-based company revolutionized substitute management for school systems, completely changing the way districts managed substitutes and employee absences. Now, as a total solutions provider, eSchool Solutions provides a full suite of products and services designed to improve administrative efficiency and help school districts work smarter. The company serves more than 500 school systems, encompassing 29,000 schools in North America.

 

**This press release can also be viewed online at http://www.1888pressrelease.com/7-school-districts-recently-selected-eschool-solutions-r-as-pr-430667.html and http://www.prlog.org/12000005-7-school-districts-recently-selected-eschool-solutions-as-absence-management-software-provider.html.

16 School Districts Select eSchool Solutions® as Provider of Absence Management Software

Orlando, FL (August 30, 2012) – Orlando-based eSchool Solutions®, the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market, is pleased to announce that 16 school districts recently selected their company to provide them with teacher absence management solutions.

eSchool Solutions provides the most powerful absence management software on the market that automatically locates and assigns the most qualified substitutes to fill every teacher absence. eSchool Solutions’ software, SmartFindExpress, was selected by the following school districts: Tulare City SD, Wellington Catholic DSB, Hartford PS, Wirt County BOE, Hackettstown BOE, Fort McMurray Catholic BO, Hastings PS, Granville County, Northwest Catholic DSB, Martinez USD, John Swett USD, Coast Mountain SD, Ontario North East DSB, Richland SD, Bellevue SD, and Rainy River District.

“We are very proud to be helping these districts manage teacher absenteeism in their schools,” said Lorri Glover, Product Manager of SmartFindExpress for eSchool Solutions. “We know that each of these districts are working very hard to improve educational standards and we are happy to be able to assist them in the process.”

SmartFindExpress automates substitute management, increases fill rates with qualified subs, expands the substitute pool, and reduces lost learning days. To learn more about eSchool Solutions and their absence management solutions, please visit http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/ or call 800-776-8774.

About eSchool Solutions®
eSchool Solutions® is the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market. In 1987, the Orlando-based company revolutionized substitute management for school systems, completely changing the way districts managed substitutes and employee absences. Now, as a total solutions provider, eSchool Solutions provides a full suite of products and services designed to improve administrative efficiency and help school districts work smarter. The company serves more than 500 school systems, encompassing 29,000 schools in North America.

 

** This press release can also be viewed online at http://www.1888pressrelease.com/16-school-districts-select-eschool-solutions-r-as-provider-pr-419984.html.