Educational Articles

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We are not alone, but we are lonely. COVID-19 has taken an emotional toll on employees and has compounded stress and loneliness in an already stressed and increasingly lonely workforce. The continued fear, uncertainty, upended routines, financial pressure, and challenge for parents trying to tackle work and child care from home has impacted our daily emotions — reducing our joy, increasing our stress, and magnifying our feelings of loneliness. What is Loneliness, and Why Should Employers Care About It? Loneliness is often difficult to describe and diagnose because the feeling is wholly subjective, but put simply it’s a feeling of inadequate social ...
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As some communities in the United States open K-12 schools, CDC offers the following considerations for ways in which schools can help protect students, teachers, administrators, and staff and slow the spread of COVID-19. Schools can determine, in collaboration with state and local health officials to the extent possible, whether and how to implement these considerations while adjusting to meet the unique needs and circumstances of the local community. Implementation should be guided by what is feasible, practical, acceptable, and tailored to the needs of each community. School-based health facilities may refer to CDC’s Guidance for U.S. Healthcare Facilities ...
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Many vision-related symptoms have long been recognized as being associated with demanding visual work-especially near visual work. Administrative assistants, students, anyone at a workstation with demanding, near visual jobs have experienced these symptoms. Because tasks performed at visual display terminals (VDTs) can be particularly visually demanding, they will cause symptoms in a greater percentage of workers than will less visually demanding tasks. The most frequent visually related symptoms reported by VDT workers include the following: Eyestrain (sore eyes or eye fatigue) Headache Near blurred vision Slowness in changing the focus of the ...
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The end of the 2019-20 school year brought uncertainty and new realities for schools across the nation. As the country shut down, school leaders wrestled with maintaining education programming in a new environment, while reimagining what the future of reopening school would look like. Uncertainty surrounding school funding and the economic impact the pandemic would have on finances created many unknowns for school leaders. As we begin the 2020-21 school year, there are still many unknowns, especially in relation to school funding. This makes the role of the school business official more critical than ever. One question you may be asking yourself is, “How can ...
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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently announced in Revenue Procedure 2020-32 the contribution limits for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), and guidelines for HSA-Qualified High Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) for 2021. These amounts are adjusted for inflation each year. Employers may want to review and consider incorporating these new limits. 2021 Limits Employee-only coverage: $3,600 annual HSA contribution limit, $1,400 minimum deductible, $7,000 out-of-pocket maximum Family coverage: $7,200 annual HSA contribution limit, $2,800 minimum deductible, $14,000 out-of-pocket maximum Employers may wish to remind employees that recent ...
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The ongoing pandemic forced administrators and teachers to seek out collaboration platforms and video conferencing solutions to host virtual meetings and online learning. Such a rapid shift meant many districts didn’t have time to properly evaluate a technology solution that was right for their continuity plan—one that took into full consideration the needs of their people and processes. This patch approach meant districts were particularly exposed to security risks, experienced inconsistent platforms and developed no enhancements to their processes. With both the demands and struggles arising from COVID19 at the global forefront, now’s the time for school ...
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Digital collaboration solutions in the classroom and administrative office have become an absolute necessity. Simply put, collaboration occurs when two or more people work together toward a mutual goal. But the ambiguity of the term and its wide application across numerous technology solutions has left district users utilizing a variety of applications that, paradoxically, contribute to a lack of collaboration at a basic level. As the state continues its discussion on the environmental state of the 2020-2021 school year, it’s likely we’re looking at a hybrid learning approach. No matter the outcome, it's vital that districts build resilience now through ...
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Your organization depends on technology to run —but states of emergency, like the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, are clearly testing how districts can maintain operational continuity in times of crisis. Whether or not your district was prepared for the immediate remote environmental change, there are lessons to be learned on the importance of building and sustaining a reliable and secure network infrastructure. For school districts of any size, critical access to administrative and instructional content relies on the internet, applications (cloud and local server-based), building networking and wireless, computers, data storage and back up, security layers, policies, ...
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In order to provide on-going remote instruction and overcome the “digital divide” of those who have limited broadband at home, many schools around the country are turning their wireless networks toward their parking lots. Similarly, districts have positioned busses throughout the neighborhoods the school serves to act as WiFi hotspots. These are reasonable responses to address community needs in a crisis—but districts should use an abundance of caution to deploy these solutions securely. Exposing your school network to the public is risky. It can increase the chances of a cyber-attack or individuals utilizing your school’s network as a platform to initiate malicious ...
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This content was written by Paula Zaher, TSA Consulting Group Today’s work place is now made up of three generations of employees: Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964), Generation Xers (born 1965-1978) and Millennials (born 1979-2000). Though they all share the goal of retirement, each generation has different thoughts on saving for retirement. Despite the general perception that many workers in the Millennial generation are lazy, they are actually better savers than either Generation X or Baby Boomer employees. According to the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies® (April 2019) report, What Is “Retirement”? Three Generations Prepare for Older Age 19th ...
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Diligent management of public funds is always a priority for those on the frontline. During economic difficulties, diligence is of the utmost importance to minimize fraudulent actions. When economic conditions exponentially suffer, additional scrutiny is required by both the Treasurer and the School Board. Remember how the fraud triangle provides a framework to understand the motivation or justification to commit fraud. The three main forces of fraud are Opportunity, Rationalization, and Pressure. So why is extra scrutiny so important during economic downturns? When vendors and employees face difficult economic challenges, “pressure” increases exponentially ...
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Cash Flow Borrowing

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Many school districts in Ohio have improved their available cash positions during the past several years as a result of a recovering economy. In many cases, assessed valuations have returned to pre-Great Recession levels or above, tax collection rates have returned to higher levels, school district income taxes have recovered with the return of more jobs and higher income levels, and state support generally increased during this time as well. School districts also worked hard to make expenditure adjustments that are still beneficial today. However, in Ohio, most school districts are still under the restrictions of House Bill 920 and the result of levy cycles. ...
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Dating back to 1936 when 27 school business representatives came together to form the Ohio Association of School Business Officials (OASBO), there have been several examples of best practices and innovation that has created the association as we are today with 1,570 members. On December 12, 2019, after 83 years of existence, OASBO opened its very own Conference Center that will be used to provide collaborative and innovative education for years to come. Those visiting our center will be greeted with our mission statement front and center, along with our purpose, vision, and value statements in both meeting rooms. In addition, members can read about our award ...
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Bricker & Eckler attorneys Beverly Meyer, Becky Princehorn, and Catherine Swartz have published an article entitled, " The current impact of the CARES Act on K-12 education ."
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