Consortium partners to help you transition to the new normal
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Find information and resources for remote learning with MISBO Digital Educational Resources consortium partners. You will find free and deeply discounted subscriptions, learning resources, and tool kits for your teachers and curriculum directors.
Magnus Health provides the most innovative way for independent schools to collect, track, and manage student health information on one online platform. Their technology helps schools save time and money by streamlining communication with parents, reducing liability for school health professionals, and keeping schools prepared in the event of an emergency.
How K-12 Schools Manage Prospective Students, Enrollment, And Student Health During COVID-19
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting every organization throughout the world and has created trying times for school administrators overnight. Most schools and student activities have been suspended indefinitely, and eLearning is the new ‘normal’ for educators. While creating online courses and ensuring that children continue to learn, School Leadership is also looking for ways to prepare for the day when students return back to school and for the next school year. Click here to read more.
New Pinnacle Consulting Group, LLC offers a full range of retirement plan consulting services designed and priced for small and medium sized organizations. Their specialty is 403(b) retirement plans, where the founding partners have over 50 years of combined experience. Services include: comprehensive compliance reviews, annual compliance services such as nondiscrimination testing, limit calculations, Form 5500, and plan start-up services including plan design, implementation, and plan document preparation. They have an established network of firms that provide legal and other support. All services are performed for a fixed price.
Everyone at New Pinnacle Consulting Group sincerely hope this note finds you, your loved ones and associates well.
Transitioning to a virtual environment may also mean leaving behind established schedules, files and resources. During this time of rapid change, one responsibility that remains unchanged is having a compliance retirement plan. A few reminders for all plan sponsors:
- At this time, regulatory deadlines have not changed (i.e. Form 5500, plan documents, etc.).
- If you need to temporarily suspend employer contributions, you need to amend your plan and notify employees prior to suspending the contributions.
- If an employee wants to stop making elective deferrals, they should complete a new salary reduction agreement.
- Some employees may request access to retirement funds through the hardship or loan provisions in the plan. To do so they should contact the investment vendor to start the process. Depending on the design of your plan and applicable regulations, the vendor can provide information on availability and options.
If we can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here and ready to help.
Contact us at 866.367.3143 or online at www.newpcg.com.
School Specialty provides K-12 schools with supplies, furniture, and equipment such as office and classroom supplies, arts & crafts, audio/visual, physical education, teacher resources, early childhood, forms, building services, furniture & equipment, and curriculum materials.
School Specialty is committed to helping educators through these challenging times. To that end, they are diligently pulling together resources to help teachers and parents as they educate remotely.
Their www.schoolspecialty.com website has been updated with at-home learning resources as well as helpful blog posts. Because this is an ever-changing situation, they are creating a steady stream of resources that will be made available to their customers, as well as to you, our partners. They can provide you with resources that you can use to send out to your members in various formats:
- Social Media – usually linking to a blog post
- Basic reference list of resources
They should have the first round of materials to you next week. If there is anything specific they can provide for you, please let them know and they will do their best to help you and your members.
Southeastern Paper Group (SEPG) is a full line janitorial distributor that provides products for all your daily cleaning needs. They carry multiple lines of towel, tissue, soap, and can liners that can be used in schools large or small. They also carry cleaning chemicals that are dispensed in a variety of fashions to help maximize your cleaning efforts while saving on labor and expense. Finally, SEPG carries a complete line of cleaning implements and equipment to facilitate your daily and rotational use.
Please see the following on product and pathogen and infection prevention information:
Staples Business Advantage provides products that go way beyond classroom and office supplies. They offer furniture and equipment, school-branded merchandise and technology equipment including audio/visual. They also offer supplies for: facilities and janitorial, safety, K-12 school and classroom, arts & crafts, faculty breakroom, copy & print products, physical education, teacher resources, early childhood, forms, curriculum materials, and so much more. Visit the interactive school map and see how Staples Business Advantage can help equip your cafeteria, nurse's office, gymnasium, and more.
Until further notice, Staples will provide free delivery on all orders and no minimum order size requirement. This will give you and your colleagues the ability to get the products you need, when and where you need them. It goes without saying that larger bundled orders help them deliver value and reliable service and are also better for the environment.
Staples is promoting the attached Remote Working piece to help schools supply their teachers with what they need for working from home.
Batteries Plus Bulbs is the leading single-source supplier for batteries and lamps along with phone/tablet/laptop repair services through their in-store We Fix It Repair Centers. The company serves more than 275,000 commercial and national accounts annually. They offer a full suite of lighting and battery solutions to optimize the learning environment, and they will work alongside your existing needs and provide you with a complimentary on-site assessment to update your facility to more energy-efficient lighting. Get educated on local utility incentives available to you with assistance from experts, and take advantage of volume pricing discounts and local pick-up and delivery. Join with Batteries Plus Bulbs to recycle your organizations batteries and light bulbs and help preserve the environment.
Batteries Plus Bulbs has been designated an essential business and will remain open to serve their customers’ needs. The company has been ramping up their operations during the Coronavirus outbreak to help ensure that schools can serve both their teachers and students.
To help comply with social distancing recommendations, Batteries Plus Bulbs stores offer curbside pickup and custom delivery options. The company’s supply chain enables them to ship all products to the store of your choice in 1-2 business days. Customers are encouraged to call their local store to place an order, then drive to Batteries Plus Bulbs where a staff member will deliver the order to their cars.
You can also shop online by logging into your MISBO account here.
As more and more people begin working from home, Batteries Plus Bulbs serves as a valuable source for batteries, chargers and other essential home office essentials. In addition, they have qualified technicians on hand to repair important devices like tablets, laptops and cell phones.
Please read more about our efforts to serve our customers’ needs in this press release.
Questions? Feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-888-905-2014.
Information on the recent Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) can be found at the following link - https://info.checkwriters.com/ffcra.
Praesidium is a mission-driven risk management firm that helps schools reduce the risk that a child will be abused by an educator, volunteer, or by another student and reduce the risk of false allegations. With over 25 years of experience and thousands of clients in the U.S. and 11 other countries, Praesidium is the national leader in abuse risk management.
COVID-19 is having a significant impact in all areas. Across the country, youth-serving organizations are facing unprecedented challenges. In some cases, quality programming that your communities rely on has been shuttered by local mandate. We recognize that some of our clients are stepping up to offer necessary resources in the midst of this situation and Praesidium commends you for providing desperately needed programming for your community. As always, we are here to help you navigate these difficult times and maintain a safe environment for all youth in your care.
Abuse Prevention Tips to Help in Our Current Climate
- EMERGENCY CHILDCARE SERVICES:
For those working towards providing emergency childcare services, please refer to this guide: Top 10 Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Essentials for Emergency Childcare
- IN-HOME BABYSITTING:
For those that are allowing staff to provide in-home babysitting services, follow the provided guidelines when implementing updated protocols: Handling Babysitters and Outside Contact
- SCREENING NEW OR TEMP EMPLOYEES:
For organizations that run regular background checks and screenings, please note that during this time, many local and state offices are closed. These closures are causing delays in obtaining information needed to fully process background checks. While you wait for these offices to resume regular business hours, here are some screening and selection tips to keep in mind to help you be fully prepared once services are active again.
- ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATIONS AND ONLINE INTERACTION:
As online interaction increases between personnel and youth due to the implementation of online learning tools, it is important that the correct policies and procedures are in place. Please follow the provided guidelines based on your electronic communication policy: Electronic Communications with Youth in Challenging Times
For more information about how offenders operate online CLICK HERE
- REMOTE STAFF AND TRAINING:
With the extreme measures taking place to distance ourselves socially, many organizations are opting to close their doors for a brief time period to protect the health of their staff, their consumers, and their community. However, abuse prevention efforts don't have to stop during this time. Take this moment as an opportunity to get your staff and volunteers caught up on training with Praesidium's Armatus® Learn to Protect online training platform.
- MANDATED REPORTING REMINDER:
As always, follow mandated reporting laws and be sure to report your findings if you suspect abuse or neglect of any sort. You can find your local State Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Numbers HERE.
We know you may be facing challenging obstacles during this unique situation, but we are here to help. Please feel free to email us at email@example.com with any questions you may have, or for more information on best practices for keeping a safe and protected environment during this COVID-19 crisis.
CDW-G is a leading provider of technology solutions for education. Whether you need software, network communications, notebooks/mobile devices, data storage, video monitors, desktops and printers – or you require more advanced virtualization, collaboration, security, mobility, data center optimization, and cloud computing solutions – CDW-G gets it.
For faculty and staff working from home orders can be placed under the school account and shipped directly to a home address. Just specify the ship to address they need to use when ordering on the school account. If you have questions and know your CDW account manager they will be glad to assist. If you do not know your account manager or need to establish an account under the MISBO program please contact the following. As usual if speaking to a CDW account manager make sure you mention you are a MISBO member.
Connection Public Sector Solutions is dedicated to fulfilling the unique, specialized IT needs of public education institutions throughout the United States. They offer expert guidance, exceptional service, and innovative strategies to empower you to make informed IT investment decisions. They'll help you get it done right the first time.
Educational Collaborators is a national educational technology consulting and professional development organization. They believe students need to have fluid literacy with the tools they’ll need to succeed in a knowledge-based economy. Through strategic planning, technology audits, and professional learning, they help schools with classroom design, staffing, databases, assessment, and best practices across administrative and classroom technology.
Educational Collaborators is focusing on helping schools with their unique and individualized support needs. With 85% of their Collaborators still working in schools, they are currently navigating the same challenges. They have reorganized some of their offerings to better adjust to the needs of schools in this challenging time and put them here: www.educollaborators.com/virtual. They are offering virtual coaching/mentoring for staff and teachers and also offering virtual professional development. They will be launching a social media series of tips from their Collaborators soon with the hashtag #VirtualEC.
Microsoft Education: Microsoft Teams for Virtual Learning and Work
Also, Microsoft Stores have closed due to the pandemic; however, the stores are working to offer virtual training sessions to schools. If you would like to take advantage of this, please contact our Microsoft representative (below) to submit the training request.
Andrea Tirpak | Andrea.Tirpak@microsoft.com | Microsoft Corp. | Account Executive, US K12 Education | m. 407-754-4258 | www.microsoft.com/education
SHI is a provider of industry-leading hardware, software, and custom IT solutions by efficiently utilizing expertise and providing world class support to each stage of the technology life-cycle. They offer dedicated account support, certified sales and technical specialists, professional IT services, and significant cost savings.
With the uncertainty and challenges of Coronavirus now spreading within U.S. Communities, we are working to make our customers aware of options available to minimize issues with remote work. Our goal here at SHI is to help raise awareness to your options and manufacturer programs that are being put in place to facilitate this.
Currently, Cisco, Microsoft, and Google have expanded their efforts to help schools throughout the country who may face challenges with remote learning. Messaging is below -
Cisco is offering several free options of their WebEx product as a response to help organizations continue collaborating; if unfamiliar, WebEx allows for group meetings, video chatting, presentations, and file sharing. Details below.
- Expanded capabilities on the typically free version, including:
- Full featured HD video meetings without the 40-minute cap which has been temporarily lifted
- Unlimited meetings, increasing the number of participants from 50 to 100
- Adding Toll-Dial In to complement our high-quality VoIP meeting join experience
- Ability to experience meetings on your desktop or mobile device
- Screen sharing and Recording with 1GB cloud storage
- Webex Teams unlimited messaging
- 90 day free trial for the full enterprise solution
- Meetings with up to 200 participants
- 50GB cloud storage
- Unlimited messaging
- Microsoft Exchange Sync
- Device registration
Microsoft has added details and information on how to utilize M365/Teams for digital classroom and collaboration, and is also holding a webinar series to assist in quick professional development.
- M365 EDU Blog
- Here is a link to the webinar series on how to best utilize Teams for remote learning during this challenging time (March 10th-April 21st): https://microsoftteams.eventbuilder.com/TeamsEducation
Google has released the below to help schools with distance learning or using Chromebooks at home:
- How to set up Chromebooks for home use
- Distance learning hub
- Google for Education blog on The Keyword
Please reach out to your dedicated account rep to assist you with any questions or concerns you have.