Opening Minds INNOVATION Awards Application Deadline Nears

Friday, Dec. 13 is final day to submit nominations for honor sponsored by Follett


MCHENRY, Ill., Dec. 5, 2013 — Individuals and organizations interested in submitting a nomination for the Opening Minds INNOVATION Awards™, sponsored by Follett, have until Friday, Dec. 13 to apply online.  The Opening Minds USA awards seek to recognize innovations that are advancing the field of early childhood education to better the lives of young children and their families.

The nomination process is open to any individual – for example, principal, teacher, librarian, social worker – or organization serving young children. The application asks applicants to detail and document how the nominated innovation makes the world a better place for children.


Follett’s goal is to help grow strong readers and lifelong learners. As the largest provider of books, ebooks and audiovisual materials to PreK-12 schools, Follett Early Learning services leverage 140 years of educational product expertise to help early childhood educators make intentional and impactful decisions about the resources they select for their early learners.


The top 10 finalists for the awards will be announced Dec. 20, with the winner unveiled Jan. 31, 2014 at the Opening Minds 2014 Conference at Hyatt Regency McCormick Place, Chicago. Opening Minds features professionals from around the world, and is the gathering place for people seeking the current trends, research and proven results to do their best to educate and care for young children.


Applications are available by visiting and clicking on the awards application box, or in PDF form.


“We know there is amazing work happening to raise and educate young children around the world. Let’s call them out!” said Gail Conway, CEO, Opening Minds USA. “If you know of an organization or individual who has come up with novel solutions to providing quality care and education for young children, encourage them to apply.”


Last month, Follett signed on as a new Platinum Level Year-Round sponsor of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the largest and most influential advocate in early care and education in the United States with 80,000 members worldwide. It is the highest level of sponsorship a commercial company can offer to support NAEYC’s critical work on behalf of young children and early childhood educators.

For more information on Follett, visit For more information on Follett Early Learning,


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About Follett’s PreK-12
Follett is the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes books, reference materials, digital resources, ebooks and audiovisual materials, as well as pre-owned textbooks. Follett also is one of the leading providers of integrated educational technology for the management of physical and digital assets, the tracking, storing and analyzing of academic data, and digital learning environment tools for the classroom focusing on student achievement.

About Follett

Since 1873, Follett has served as the trusted partner in education for students and educators at all levels of learning. Today Follett delivers physical and digital learning materials, retail services, school content and management systems to more than 70,000 early childhood, primary and secondary schools, and on more than 1,000 college campuses. Headquartered in River Grove, Illinois, Follett is a $2.7 billion privately held company.


Providence Public School District Chooses Skyward as its SIS Vendor
Skyward will serve the largest school district in Rhode Island
STEVENS POINT, Wis. – Dec. 5, 2013 – Providence Public School District, the largest in Rhode Island, selected Skyward, Inc., an industry leading K-12 school administrative software provider, as its student information system (SIS) vendor. The 47-school district looks forward to receiving time and cost savings with the Skyward Student Management Suite, as well as the ability to transfer student records easily between districts.

After evaluating the three SIS vendors approved by the Rhode Island Department of Education, Providence selected Skyward because it enables students to transfer to Providence from other districts without the need to re-key important data such as demographics, test scores, grade history or immunization records.

“Providence serves more than 24,000 students, with students transferring between districts on a regular basis,“ said Kevin McFerrin, executive vice president of business development at Skyward. “The district-to-district transfer feature was a crucial component of the student management suite in order to meet the needs of the school district. Skyward provides the responsive, one-stop system needed to ensure data accuracy across districts, and to serve the schools’ own needs on a daily basis.”

Providence Public School District is consulting with Skyward to transition to the new system, and is aiming to have installation and implementation complete for the 2014-2015 school year.

“After carefully reviewing several options to meet our increasingly complex information needs, we are confident that the Skyward Student Information System will aid us in making informed, real-time, data-driven decisions in our operations and planning,” said Providence Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Susan F. Lusi. “We are eagerly beginning our implementation, and looking forward to a lasting, productive relationship with Skyward.”

In addition to Providence, the North Providence, Pawtucket and Central Falls school districts also have selected the Skyward SIS. Skyward will serve 32 schools and almost 16,000 students among these three districts.

About Skyward
Skyward is a leading provider of K-12 school administrative software that surpasses districts’ needs in state reporting, improves operational capabilities, and opens communication between schools and families. Today, the Skyward School Management System™ is used in more than 1,600 school districts worldwide, ranging from districts with as few as 50 students to statewide implementations supporting more than 800,000 students. Founded in 1980, Skyward serves school districts with its integrated student, finance, and human resources suite of products and is proudly made and supported in the United States. To learn more, visit


One Call Now Named “Reader’s Choice Top 100 Product” by District Administration Magazine

K12 leaders highlight products that enhance learning in another record-breaking year for nominations

December 5, 2013 – Troy, Ohio – One Call Now has been recognized for making a positive difference in education by K12 leaders who named it to District Administration magazine’s “Readers’ Choice Top 100 Product for 2013.”

 The winners, selected by District Administration’s editors from a record 1,800-plus nominations, were products that received the highest number of nominations and best descriptions from K12 leaders. The Readers’ Choice Top 100 has been announced online and in the December issue of District Administration.
In recognizing the most innovative products, the annual District Administration Readers’ Choice Top 100 Products award informs superintendents and other senior school district leaders about products their colleagues around the country are using to help their districts excel.
“The fact that we had a record number of readers participating in this recognition program is a testament to the interest that K12 leaders have in products for improving educational outcomes and operational efficiencies,” says JD Solomon, District Administration’s editorial director.  “All of the honorees in our Top 100 program should be very proud of their achievement.”

“We want to thank the school administrators from around the country who nominated One Call Now to be selected as one of the Top 100 products in 2013; is an immense honor,” said Leib Lurie, CEO, One Call Now. He added, “This award tells us that we are right in sync with what schools want and need in the area of message notification and school safety. Moreover, these administrators are validating our commitment to providing tools that allow schools and districts to leverage their resources to ensure that all students can feel safe as they achieve their academic potential.”

About District Administration

District Administration provides K12 leaders with critical news and information for school district management, through its monthly magazine, website, e-newsletters and the District Administration Leadership Institute Superintendent Summits. For more information, visit

About One Call Now

One Call Now is America’s largest message notification service, provides messages that protect, inform, and engage their students, parents, and communities. For more information, please visit