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Painting a blank Canvas

District adopts platform for communication between teachers, parents, students

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In attempt to improve communication in high schools throughout LISD, the district has adopted Canvas, a network that allows teachers to communicate with students and parents, make announcements, create assignments and enter grades all in one secure platform. Compared to other programs such as Google Classroom or Remind, Canvas is supposedly much safer as it is regulated by the district.

“Remind is great,” U.S. History teacher Robert Borenstein said. “I use it, but it’s not regulated by the district so announcements the teacher puts out in Remind isn’t seen by the district and backed up by the district.”

While Canvas is still relatively new to the community, students, teachers and parents seem to enjoy the benefits and features the system provides so far.

“With Canvas, it just seems really easy to me,” senior Christian Holeman said. “On the forms part of it where the teacher will put out an assignment or a question, you can reply to it and immediately go and reply to another student’s answer. It can actually start some interesting conversation between the class.”

Because everything is on one platform, users have found Canvas to be more accessible than other programs. With easier access, parents are able to become better involved with the school by connecting with teachers and tracking their child’s work more quickly.

“I think it’s going to take a while for some people to learn it,” Borenstein said. “I found that once you play around with it a little bit, it really is very simple. It’s very easy and it’s effective.”

Not only does Canvas provide tools for teachers and students to use in classrooms, students are also exposed to a system used by various colleges and universities. By having experience with Canvas in high school, students who attend these universities may have a better and easier time navigating the system.

“It is used at over 3,000 higher ed, school districts and institutions globally,” instructional technology facilitator Merriam Wyne said. “Some examples in Texas are NCTC, Collin College, SMU, UNT, University of Texas and Texas A&M University.”

With the strong push of technology usage from the district, Canvas has taken classrooms a step further into the modern world.

“It helps classrooms become more accessible, more interactive and more innovative,” Wyne said. “Canvas is a game changer.”

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