In a recent interview, Ms. Patten of the school’s tech department and Ms. Eakin of the media department were asked various questions about the use of Schoology as a Learning Management System, or LMS for Hanover High School. An LMS, as defined by Ms. Patten, is a web-based system that that is designed with the purpose of allowing teachers to “create, deliver, receive, respond, and access student performance” on a single system. In other words, Schoology was introduced to the school with the purpose of making online schoolwork easier to keep track of for both students and teachers.
When asked about how a new LMS would be selected, Ms. Patten responded that the tech department was looking for an LMS that allowed advisor and support staff to interact with course content and students to do quizzes and tests on the LMS. The tech departments was also looking for an LMS that was easy to use and had the ability to interface with PowerSchool and Google Apps for Education. The systems that were being considered for this role were Schoology, Google Classroom, Sakai, Canvas, and Edmodo. Ms. Patten went on to say that, “Schoology won out because it was the only tool that could interface directly with Powerschool.” She also mentioned that Schoology met the rest of the criteria as well.
Ms. Patten was asked about what she liked and disliked about Schoology as well. She stated that she liked Schoology because it could connect to PowerSchool and Google. However, she commented that Schoology could improve its calendar tool and its ability to connect to the PowerSchool Gradebook.
Finally, the Broadside also asked Ms. Patten and Ms. Eakin if they felt that Schoology has been a satisfactory tool so far. In response, they said that they “are happy with the number of teachers trying it.” They also mentioned that they have received fairly positive feedback about Schoology, but it is still too early in the school year to make a complete judgement on it. They said, “Teachers still need more time to really learn how to adapt their materials to work best in the new platform and that kind of change takes time.”