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.

 

Still Time to Register for the 2014 Solutions Summit 2014!

There’s still to register for the eSchool Solutions 26th annual SmartFindExpress Solutions Summit in Denver, Colorado. For organizations interested in allowing three or more participants, eSchool Solutions offers reduced team registration packages.  Find the pricing of each package as well as applicable discounts and additional information here.

Once your registration is complete, prepare to be dazzled by our lineup of timely topics for our two-part breakout sessions, including information pertaining to the Affordable Care Act, Integration, and Job Exports.  The breakout sessions are complemented by a plethora of current discussion group topics.  Our small discussion groups are designed to encourage participation from all members, and will center on myriad topics:  Recruiting and Hiring Substitutes, Substitute Orientation, Getting More Out of Your Announcements Page, Using Reports in SFE 2.3, and more.

With one evening and two full days of presentations, breakout sessions, networking, and discussion groups, you will learn to work smarter, and your organization will surely reap the benefits of your new knowledge and expertise. Visit www.eschoolsolutions.com/summit to discover how your district can improve performance by attending this year’s summit.

The 2014 SmartFindExpress Solutions Summit, hosted by eSchool Solutions, is scheduled for April 9 through April 11, 2014. Remember to register early to take advantage of the early registration fees for you and your district, and we look forward to seeing you this year in Denver!

Importance of Collaboration in Professional Development for Teachers

Professional development is a complex and multifaceted endeavor that has become essential for teachers looking to keep up with the new information and best practices of today. Research shows that when it comes to professional development for teachers, collaboration with other teachers is essential. In a study done by Darling-Hammond and McLaughlin (1995), one of the activities found to improve the success of teaching was “collaborative endeavors that give educators the ability to share knowledge among their peers”.

Teachers thrive from collaboration because it gives them a chance to talk through ideas with like-minded people and learn from each other. Through discussion, teachers have the opportunity to increase their understanding of the subject matter, as well as explore new teaching strategies. Such collaborative professional development is exactly what research shows to be most effective for improving teachers’ practices.

Growing evidence suggests that this kind of professional development not only makes teachers feel more confident about their teaching practices, but it also helps students to be able to learn the material better. Therefore, creating a collaborative space where teachers have the opportunity for continual learning is the best way to inspire greater achievement for students.

eSchool Solutions lets you inspire a collaborative culture in your school with our professional development product TeacherStudio™. TeacherStudio™ is an online professional learning community designed to help support educators through ongoing collaboration and sharing of best practices within and across school, district, and organization lines. To learn more, please visit our TeacherStudio™ page on our website.

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.

Evaluating the Effect of a Teacher’s Subject-Specific Degree on Student Success

There’s an underlying assumption that teachers with a degree in their main classroom subject are more effective than those without. Because of this notion, there have been hundreds of studies about the impact that teachers have on their students. A report recently released by the National Center for Education Statistics presents solid evidence to reinforce this theory in relation to the subjects of science and math.

The report states that according to the results of their study, high school math and science students of teachers with subject-specific training have greater achievement than those without. By contrast, the National Center for Education Statistics did not find evidence that subject-specific degrees or certification have an effect on student achievement in English or history.

For the study, math and science teachers with respective degrees were placed in English and history classrooms. Success from students in these classrooms was found not to be directly related to the teacher’s degree. However, in the opposite situation, where English and history teachers without specific math or science degrees were placed in math and science classrooms, it became crucial for the students to have a teacher trained in the field to be successful.

These results clearly suggest that in math and science, the teacher subject-specific knowledge is essential in determining achievement. Mathematics success on tests is extremely dependent on whether or not the person teaching the class has a BA or MA in the subject. Similarly, to achieve high test scores in science, it has been determined that teachers who have a degree in science dramatically increase the odds.

At eSchool Solutions, we provide a comprehensive approach to professional development for teachers so that they get the certification they need to be successful in the classroom. With Electronic Registrar Online, our clients can track professional development activities and improve teacher effectiveness. Learn more about our professional development for teachers, by visiting: http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/professional-development/.

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.

eSchool Solutions® Announces Client Presentations at their 2013 Solutions Summit

Orlando, FL (November 28, 2012) – Orlando-based eSchool Solutions®, the leading provider of integrated technology solutions for the preK-12 education market, is pleased to announce that they will be including client presentations and client-led discussions at their 2013 Solutions Summit in San Antonio, Texas next March.

So far, the following eSchool Solutions’ clients will be participating in the 2013 Solutions Summit:

  • Pamela Kennedy of York Region District School Board (ON) is leading a discussion-based breakout session designed to get the creative juices flowing as schools consider other uses for SmartFindExpress.
  • Peter Ianniello of New York City Schools (NY) will present during the general session about two important topics: professional development for substitute teachers and paraprofessionals, as well as social networking policies.
  • Kathy Anderson of Hewlett Woodmere Public Schools (NY) will share the novel approach her district uses to manage teacher absences district-wide.
  • Karen “KC” Crawford of Topeka Public Schools (KS) is going to share substitute orientation – the Topeka way.
  • Sandy Edwards of Grant Wood Area Education Agency (IA) will be providing comic relief as she looks back at the last 25 years with SmartFindExpress.
  • Dr. Danny DeGuire of Northside Independent School District will be sharing tips regarding the SFE announcement page.

“We have the best clients and we are really excited that they are willing to participate in this year’s Solutions Summit,” says Shelley Schmidt, Marketing Manager for eSchool Solutions. “We are happy to include as many client presentations as possible at the conference.”

Individuals can register for the 2013 Solutions Summit by visiting http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/summit/registration/. Registration is $400 per person when you register before January 11th and $500 after January 11th. To learn more about eSchool Solutions’ 2013 Solutions Summit, please visit http://www.eschoolsolutions.com/summit/.

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/eschool-solutions-r-announces-client-presentations-at-their-pr-440150.html and http://www.prlog.org/12031564-eschool-solutions-announces-client-presentations-at-their-2013-solutions-summit.html.