As Education Changes, Lumen Touch Changes with It

Lumen™ Touch has been in the thick of things with our partner schools since the first hint of the pandemic. The administrators, teachers, and especially, the IT directors at our schools began doing everything they could to prepare for distance learning and mitigate risk as early as last March. They’ve continued that work each day with determination. They make sure students have laptops, arranging for contactless pickup for students who didn’t go home with one. They come up with creative ways to provide access to the internet, enabling mobile hotspots in parking lots and on buses, for instance. But our industry remains in constant flux, and with the changes being thrust upon us, we must adapt accordingly.

New for the 2020-2021 School Year from Lumen Touch

You already know how we strive to protect student data and provide the kind of IT support that makes a measurable difference to every school’s data security. But we haven’t stopped there. We have been listening to the schools we work with about what really hinders their ability to keep their students safe, and our developers have been working tirelessly in response to their feedback to meet the needs of schools across the country.

Bright Care™ Rapid Screening Entry: Though health and wellness has always been at the core of our values and technology, we understand that the well-being of our students is now more important than ever. Bright Care Rapid Screening Entry allows any staff member to quickly screen student temperatures as they enter the building. This systematic and data-driven application easily allows you to monitor students and staff and carry out contact tracing. Using data coming from temperature sensors of different kinds (e.g. GoSafe), you will have another level of contactless control to manage the safety of your students and staff.

Bright Learning™ Secure Video Conferencing: We know that students learn through a variety of media and that learning ‘online’ doesn’t just mean watching videos and completing multiple-choice assessments. In a time when we cannot always be face-to-face for instruction and discussions, it is critical to be able to provide a safe, secure, interactive, and measured video software solution. For these reasons, we have worked to include not only the virtual learning video, but also, the ability to capture the engagement of students during the interactive sessions. Our secure video conferencing is an integrated video platform that can be used within the Bright Learning system to manage virtual and distance learning. By incorporating this onto our platform, we are able to better manage cybersecurity while providing features to make the new way of virtual engagement seamless and less stressful.

Lumen Touch is committed to providing the safest and most comprehensive learning solutions to meet your school’s needs – without compromising student security or education integrity. We’d love to have the opportunity to talk about how our platform can help your school. Get in touch.

Distance Learning May Be Less of a Sprint and More of an Endurance Run

California just announced that all California state universities would be delivering classes online for the fall semester. It is expected that the University of California system may follow suit and that other states, in turn, may follow their lead. As this verdict trickles down, we may find that more K-12 schools (especially middle schools and high schools) will also be put in a position where distance learning becomes the only safe way forward – at least for a while longer.

Another semester of distance learning isn’t necessarily great news for anyone: Teachers have missed engaging with their students; students have missed being with their friends and learning in an environment that supports them; moms and dads were ready for the kids to return to the classroom a few weeks ago.

In This Together

For more than two months, we’ve been sharing our thoughts about surviving the pandemic, providing you with tools and resources that make it easier to engage with your students from a distance. We even shared an inspiring  glimpse inside the world of one teacher who is rocking distance learning like she was born for it. But when we say we’re in this together, it’s not just lip service. We are here – whether it’s for a month or for six – to help support teachers, students, and parents through this longer-than-expected effort.

What You Can Expect from Lumen™ Touch

We have been working diligently to make sure the teachers and districts who use our Bright Learning™ solution have everything they need – including tech support – so that they can effectively use this powerful edtech to deliver instruction, manage grading and assessment, and engage with their students. Whether you’re working from home or heading back to school, we will continue to roll out updates based on the feedback we’ve received, to give you the functionality you need.

Video Software Integration that Meets Compliance Requirements

In the next few weeks, you’ll learn more about our latest effort to support teachers, students, and families. We are in the process of rolling out a video software platform for more interactive and dynamic communication between teachers and students. This integrated platform will also allow school administrators to better communicate with families, nurses to arrange a school telemedicine system, and special ed teachers to support their students remotely, as well as a variety of other applications. Unlike the risks with Zoom and Skype, this platform offers the necessary security required to maintain compliance with FERPA and HIPPA laws.

Visionary Look at the Future of Education

We are focusing on the new future of schools. In the coming weeks, we’ll begin sharing insight, from a national perspective, on what schools can look like in the future. It’s hard right now, but there is a great deal of opportunity for meaningful and significant change. And Lumen Touch is here to help ensure that schools are supported. Our team will be available to help you navigate any technology challenge you have, whether it’s using the software or experiencing issues with infrastructure.

Let us help you keep smiling and find hope and joy in every day. Here are some favorite stories from this week:

  • Students from the Class of 2020, most of whom are not having typical graduation ceremonies,were given a very special graduation celebration.
  • An Australian design company has created a maze for parks so that people can exercise, maintain social distance, and still get out of the house.
  • As farmers struggle, Kroger stepped in and bought 50,000 gallons of milk and donated it to local food banks.

Stay home, stay safe, stay strong. We’re here for you – even if you don’t know where your here will be yet.

Virtual Learning in a Time of Crisis with Bright Student

Ollie Puls is a geometry teacher and technology specialist at South Harrison School District in Bethany, MO. She has many years of experience providing instruction in a virtual setting and has benefitted from her forward-thinking school district that has encouraged their teachers to leverage online instruction tools for the past seven years. Ollie uses Bright Student to teach her geometry classes. So, when the pandemic sent everyone home for the year, not only was she able to continue supporting her students fully, but she was able to do so while suddenly being home with her 6-year-old twins. We spoke to Ollie about her experience using Lumen™ Touch; you can watch the video here.

Benefits of Using Lumen Touch for Distance Learning

Bright Learning™ is a comprehensive, integrated district curriculum and learning management system, which allows school districts to map objectives and skills to student learning activities and assess student mastery on a continual basis. Bright Learning is an all-in-one solution, which manages curriculum, instruction, assessment, and grading. Our system allows teachers to create and share learning activities with other instructors and districts from across the country.

Work-Life Balance

Before Lumen Touch, Ollie was spending about eight hours every Sunday grading papers. She would stay at work until 8 pm every night. She knows that, had she not discovered Lumen Touch and had the opportunity to revolutionize her instruction, she would not have been able to keep teaching once she had her twins.

Lesson Delivery

Ollie took the PowerPoint slides she was using in class, recorded video lectures to go with them and loaded them into Lumen Touch. Now her students get more time with their teacher. They can watch the lectures and have lessons delivered right to their laptops at their convenience, and then, when they come to class, they have time to ask questions, get clarification on confusing points, and have time to work on lessons. Teachers have control of how far ahead students are allowed to work.

Testing that Works for Teachers and Students

Ollie can load a test into Lumen Touch faster than she can go to the copy room and make copies of tests. Bright Student offers wide-ranging functionality, even with a course as complex as geometry, which requires the use of symbols and equations. Teachers can:

  • Set up a test or quiz so that students can check their answers and try again until they get them right (this option can also be toggled off for exams)
  • Allow more than one right answer
  • Have open-ended questions that require a written answer or essay response
  • Grade a test, then allow students to make corrections by toggling on the check-your-answer feature
  • Adjust grades with a quick review to allow for partial credit or corrections
  • Reuse tests and shuffle questions so that no two students are looking at the same questions at the same time

More Time to Support Students

Because the Lumen system does the heavy lifting on the grading and lesson delivery, the time teachers and students spend together (whether in the classroom or on Zoom or similar video conferencing platform) can be better spent working to improve the students’ understanding and capabilities. Teachers get more one-on-one time with students and can better individualize instruction to support each student.

Less Stress, Even During a Crisis

For teachers using Bright Student, who already have tests and lessons loaded, shifting to distance learning does not require anything more than setting up one-on-one meetings with students, to check on their progress. The stress level is lower; the students can continue their work without experiencing a major disruption, and the teachers have time to provide needed support. Parents aren’t having to step in and do the teaching.

Lumen Touch has the same capabilities when used remotely as it does at the school.  This empowers the school staff, students, and parents the ability to interact with each other in a new learning environment that accommodates distance learning. Bright Learning was designed to be a flexible system that allows for many ways of accomplishing different tasks and achieving better outcomes – even when school is canceled, and everyone is learning from home.

At Lumen Touch, our goal is to support schools, teachers, and students. We focus on improving the learning opportunities for children, demonstrating measurable outcomes. Learn more.

Supporting Students and Teachers through Challenging Times

Look at any teacher’s social media posts and you’ll encounter an emotional journey:

  • Sadness from having to temporarily say goodbye to students
  • Frustration over having to quickly adapt lessons to an online environment
  • Fear for the safety and health of their students and colleagues
  • Desperation to get technology to function properly
  • Melancholy at the realization that students may not be returning to the classroom this year

Not every school district has cancelled classes for the year; some are reassessing every two weeks, but the likelihood of most students finishing the school year from home is high. But as Dr. Brad Johnson recently tweeted, “Schools, remember this is not the new normal. This is just surviving a crisis. You don’t build a new home in a storm, you weather the storm and then regroup once it’s over.”

When the Going Gets Tough, We’re Stronger Together

As difficult as this has been for educators and students alike, we’ve been heartened at seeing the incredible strength demonstrated by members of our education community as they come together and support each other. From sharing lesson ideas and supporting each other online to making sure school children are still fed a nutritious breakfast and lunch to sharing moments of humor to help us all get through, the education community has never been more committed to each other and to their students and parents. We’re hearing stories about school districts handing out laptops and hotspots to ensure every student has access to online learning, EdTech companies offering their services for free, and so many resources being provided to help families and schools cope.

Surviving the Stay-at-Home Order

Whether you’re a parent learning core curriculum for the first time so you can help your child with their studies or you’re a teacher who is repurposing assignments to adapt them for distance learning, you are not in this alone. We’ve rounded up some great resources to help.

Screen time. Parents, relax. As with everything, moderation is key, but according to a review of the research,  the evidence linking screens to harm is, in reality, paper thin.

Adapting lessons. This guide can help teachers stay engaged with students and adjust lessons.

More resources. WeAreTeachers has put together an exhaustive list of resources for teachers and students.

Lumen Touch Is Here to Support You

The Bright SPED™ system will continue to support communication among staff and student teams, as well as the development of progress reports, IEP forms, and associated documentation. Bright SPED is a multi-user system, allowing your team to work together on an individual record at the same time. We are also adding a parent portal.

Bright Student™ has the same capabilities when used remotely as it does in the school.  This empowers the school staff, students, and parents, providing them with the ability to interact with each other in a new learning environment that accommodates this emergency situation and perhaps creates a confidence that respects a different model for our future.

We are holding a variety of webinars to help. You can schedule here.

We will get through this. We are stronger together. Stay home, stay safe, and let us know how we can be of service to you.