Did you Know?

IT4K12 Session Highlights

Canoe Kids: Exploring Indigenous Cultures Through Authentic Indigenous Voices

Join the creators of Canoe Kids, as they share experiences and images of working within Indigenous communities to support people in telling their stories, of their culture, history and experiences. The team travels to work within a community over a period of time and the result of this authentic process, is the development of digital and print publications which brings voice to each unique community.

Security and Compliance with Office 365  

The Security and Compliance Center inside of Office 365 provides an excellent set of tools and controls to establish and monitor policies within your school district.  In this two-hour session, we’ll take a tour of the Office 365 SCC and more.

What’s Your Comfort Zone? Supporting Aboriginal Education

In this session, we explore through a guided conversation where participants are in their Aboriginal educational journey and their understanding of the new curriculum. We will also highlight key resources and services that ERAC provides to member districts. We encourage audience members to bring their questions, challenges and successes to make this a rich and engaging experience.

Beyond Engagement: Transforming Student Learning Through Virtual Reality

This will be a follow up expansion session to last year’s presentation which focused on the VR app, Google Expeditions. This year will focus on lessons learned and specific strategies to incorporate VR experiences into teaching and learning, with concrete examples, tools and lesson ideas.

Cyber Security Directions in K-12: How it Impacts Everyone

Districts and classrooms are vulnerable to cyber criminals. This session will help educate and increase awareness for IT personnel and educators on strategies BC districts are adopting to try and stay ahead of the ever changing cyber security landscape.

Actioning the Applied Design Skills and Technology (ADST) Curriculum Across the District

At this session, David Vandergugten, Assistant Superintendent of School District No. 42 will share how their district deeply integrated the ADST curriculum into K-12 classrooms. He will discuss Design Thinking as a pedagogy and how it can be used to bring hands-on learning into all classrooms.

Cloud IT in B.C. Education (Whiteboard Session)

As school districts make progress in their digital transformation journey, the challenges and opportunities of mobility are usually top of mind. Come join us and explore the new cloud technologies that are unlocked as part of Microsoft 365 – specifically Enterprise Mobility + Security.

Gartner Services to MyEd School Districts

The Ministry of Education has partnered with Gartner, the world’s leading research and advisory company, to provide a district subscription to Gartner for Technical Professionals (GTP) as an additional free service for those districts utilizing MyEducation BC.

SIP trunking with Thinktel

Learn how to leverage SIP Trunking technology (a resilient VoIP Protocol) to harness the Unified Communication Tools available in Microsoft Office 365 in the modern school setting and reduce expenditures.

Finding the Right Portfolio

For the past 5 years SD 47 has been working on improving Communicating Student Learning via the use ePortfolios. Come join the conversation surrounding the journey we have been on in investing 5 approaches to portfolio based communication. What we have learned, and where we are headed.

Bridging Worldviews: Creating Entry Points into Aboriginal Education

Participants will explore the new curriculum through an Aboriginal lens. Utilizing the Aboriginal Worldviews and Perspectives framework, educators will create and plan their entry point into meaningful professional development, sharing and learning. We will explore our own identity and interests and connect our personal knowledge to Aboriginal culture. This will be supported through the use of culturally responsive and authentic resources.

For more session details, scheduled times and speaker information, visit the IT4K12 Program Page.

Don’t miss out on this year’s event. Register now!

Book your stay at the special event rate before it expires on October 18 through the online reservation system. This special rate is available three days prior to and after the event.


2018 IT4K12 Conference

Program Now Available

Check out the IT4K12 Program Page to view the most up to date session information. See details on the many presentations and workshops being offered at this year’s event along with presenter information.

Have you registered to attend this year’s IT4K12 Conference? Join your colleagues and ERAC members from across BC by registering now. Limited space remains available to attend the special pre-conference event Wednesday November 21st at Science World, highlighting The Science Behind Pixar exhibit. To reserve a spot, select the option to attend during registration.

Book your guest room at the Sheraton Vancouver Airport hotel to take advantage of the special event rate. Book by October 18 through the online reservation system. This special rate is available three days prior to and after the event.

Keynote Highlight

A Conversation with Dr. Helen Papagiannis

Dr. Helen Papagiannis, the keynote speaker for IT4K12 2018, is the author of The Augmented Human, an introduction to advancements in Augmented Reality (AR). In the book she explores how AR technologies can enhance the ways a user experiences their environment.

ERAC had an opportunity to talk with Dr. Papagiannis about what led her to the field of AR.

She reflected on her early exploration of visual arts media during her secondary school years at Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts in the Toronto District School Board. This education provided her with rich experiences in working with design, photography (darkroom!), life drawing, sculpture, and printmaking. She found printmaking to be an early entry into the concept of layering. Both printmaking and sculpture helped her to develop the ability to think spatially in different ways, and to value touch and materiality. She has continued to explore those concepts in her study with AR.

We wondered what interested her most about the future of AR.

She is interested in the potential for creating multi-user experiences, and the opportunity for immersive storytelling. She speaks of learning to design with intention. Reality needs to be ‘the star’…and AR should enhance our existing reality, not supplant it. It can create a sense of amazement, bringing together visual and tactile worlds, layering multi-sensory experiences.

Last comments?

“It’s about wonderment. Wonderment is the gateway to curiosity and learning. If we can design experiences that enhance our lives and add delight to someone’s life through AR…that would be a huge success.”

Join us at IT4K12 to hear more about this fascinating view of what it might mean to ‘be human’ in the future.

Session Highlights

ADST Lesson Planning

With the advent of the new ADST Curriculum, SD 47 Powell River created a template that can be used by teachers in their unit and lesson planning activities. Attend this session to explore these templates and consider their use in your own classroom and district.

Design Thinking

Join Leslie McBeth from Future Design School for a hands-on, action packed workshop that will teach participants to leverage the design thinking process to solve strategic challenges in their schools.

K-12 The Most Difficult IT Support Challenge

Supporting Technology for K-12 is more difficult than virtually any other organization. Come for some stories and tips on how to do it and bring a story or two of your own!

Explain Your Thinking

Participants leaving this session will be able to discover amazing tools to help students communicate their understanding. This session will look at Flipgrid, Sreencasting, Google Slides and other tools that help students explain their thinking. All tools shared are cloud-based and integrate nicely with Google Classroom.

How to Host a Hack-a-Thon

This workshop will present a simple workflow for hosting a Hack-a-thon. You will get the chance to try out different coding platforms that are grade appropriate. We will present a format that can easily be implemented into your classroom to get students excited about problem solving, computational thinking and coding.

Unified Communications: The Key to Successful Teamwork Throughout the Organization

The challenges we encounter in our work require us to communicate with people outside our immediate team, department or organization. However, communication is easier for some people than others, which creates gaps in our efforts and erodes success. Find out how unified communication can be support improved communication in your district.

Explore the World with Google Cardboard

Never heard of Google Cardboard? Many folks haven’t! Cardboard is a relatively new Google product taking VR (Virtual Reality) to a whole new level of cool. With a cardboard viewer box and a smartphone, you can explore the world. In this session, we’ll talk about the technology behind Cardboard, which apps are available, and you’ll have a chance to give it a test drive!

Learn about its potential in the classroom. From virtual field trips around the world to swimming with sharks, Google Cardboard is the next big thing in education.

BC Digital Classroom Sessions at IT4K12

Gale In Context Suite (Canada, Science, Global Issues)

This session will look at the current, media rich content of the In Context Suite of databases from Gale. These three databases work well to support the redesigned BC curriculum at the grade 8-12 level. We will investigate tips, tricks, Lexile reading level search functions and the on-demand text and voice translations with the intention of supporting diverse learners in the classroom. If you need online resources for the secondary level, these three databases provide support for most curricular areas in grade 8-12.

Harness the (Science) Power!

Explore Science Power with ERAC’s Professional Learning Team. Find out more about this fantastic World Book product, ready for use in any intermediate classroom, aligned to the BC Curriculum and chock full of classroom, home, and extension activities for learners in any context. See how to search for topics according to Big Idea, curricular competency or by reading level. Discover Science Power’s built-in tools for differentiating for your learners easily. Science Power will deliver content, creativity and flexibility to your science program— and the best news is, you already have access to it!


New PIA available for Zoom Video Communications, Inc.

A new Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) template for Zoom Video Communications, Inc. is now available to download and personalize for your district.

Completion of PIAs ensures Districts comply with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) when introducing new initiatives or programs.

You can download this PIA template and access additional privacy and security information at pia.bcerac.ca.


New PIA available for All the Right Type 4 Online

 A new Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) template for All the Right Type 4 Online (ATRT4) is now available to download and personalize for your district.

Completion of PIAs ensures Districts comply with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) when introducing new initiatives or programs.

You can download this PIA template and access additional privacy and security information at pia.bcerac.ca.


New PIA available for Microsoft 365 A3

A new Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) template for M365 A3 is now available to download and personalize for your district.

Completion of PIAs ensures Districts comply with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) when introducing new initiatives or programs.

You can download PIA templates and access additional privacy and security information at pia.bcerac.ca.


Technology Leadership Advisory Committee

ERAC’s Executive Committee has appointed the following individuals to the Technology Leadership Advisory Committee for a term beginning in June 2018 and continuing through to July 2019. This is an ongoing committee with annual reconfirmation of appointments.

The role of the committee is to provide advice to ERAC’s Executive Committee as to IT directions, policies and initiatives of benefit to consortium members.

ERAC welcomes these representatives to the committee:

Tim Agnew – Director of Information Technology  SD22 Vernon
Cheryl Fernandes – Director Information Systems and Technology  SD35 Langley
Ted Owens – Network Analyst/IT Manager  SD54 Bulkley Valley
Ted Pennell –Director of Information Technology  SD61 Greater Victoria
Jennifer Roberts – District Principal of Transformative Learning and Technology  SD5 Southeast Kootenay
Stephen Whiffin – Director of Instruction/CIO  SD43 Coquitlam


New PIA Available for Follett Destiny Library Manager

A new Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) template for Follett Destiny Library Manager is now available to download and personalize for your district.

Completion of PIAs ensures Districts comply with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) when introducing new initiatives or programs.

You can download PIA templates and access additional privacy and security information at pia.bcerac.ca.


Act Now: ERAC Discounts on Canoe Kids

ERAC has reached an agreement with Canoe Kids to make Volumes 1, 2 and 3 available to members at discounted prices. Canoe Kids digital magazines celebrate the differences and similarities among Indigenous cultures. The stories, themes and extraordinary photography are a valuable resource for teachers and students in developing an understanding of First Peoples perspectives and knowledge.

The materials are suitable for elementary and secondary levels. This agreement includes:

Volume 1: The Ojibwe
Volume 2: The Haida
Volume 3: The Mi’kmaq

Both digital and print versions are available at preferred pricing for ERAC members.

Digital versions can be ordered directly through ERAC and we will invoice you for the number of schools in your District.

If you are not ordering digital versions, print copies can be ordered via the Canoe Kids online store, using the ERAC member discount code.

For full details of this agreement, including confidential pricing information, an order form and the discount code for print copies, click here.


ERAC Extends Follett Agreement for One Year

ERAC’s agreement with Follett School Solutions for Destiny Library Manager has been revised and renewed for one year. The agreement offers discounts for districts that purchase an annual license for specific Destiny products and services. This agreement includes the following components:

  • Destiny Library Manager software and services – including implementation, data conversion, initial training and project management
  • Options for self-hosted and vendor-hosted Destiny
  • Discounted renewal prices for Destiny Library Manager and Textbook Manager 

For agreement details, check here.


ERAC Renews Agreement with West Education

The ERAC-West Education group agreement on SchoolMessenger Communicate (formerly SchoolConnects from Synrevoice), the fully hosted version of the company’s popular communications system, has been renewed until April 30, 2020. The agreement between ERAC and West’s Education group remains focused on the SchoolMessenger Communicate Hosted Service. The West Education group will also offer ERAC member districts a discount on the new SafeArrival solution.