Remote learning tool functional again

Published 5:49 pm Wednesday, August 26, 2020

NCEdCloud is now functional, again, after outages Aug. 17 and 19.

NCEdCloud is a “big umbrella for several of our software applications,” explained Tyrrell Superintendent Oliver Holley. It hosts teachers’ lessons, grading and attendance tools, accesses student records and a training module, among other applications, he said.

But the teachers in Tyrrell County still taught and classes were recorded during the outages so students could log in online or use flash drives to see their lessons.

“The staff adjusted well,” Holley remarked.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson was sufficiently miffed that he issued the following statement Aug. 19:

“It’s bad enough that so many students don’t have the option to attend school in-person, but malfunctions of the tool that so many schools use to access remote learning are simply unacceptable.

“These are challenging times, and everyone is trying to extend more grace. That’s what Identity Automation, the vendor, got on Monday [Aug. 17], the first time their remote learning tool went down.

“Parents, educators, and students are all doing the best that we can and deserve technology that works. While we are limited in terms of what we can do immediately, rest assured that the Department of Public Instruction will be having blunt discussions about these failures with the vendor and the NC Department of Information Technology in the days ahead.”

DPI stated that Identity Automation was selected after a Request For Proposals process in 2013.

Craven County Public Schools stated online that NCEdCLOUD experienced an “overload due to so many students across the state trying to log in at the same time,” The Associated Press reported.

The AP also stated that about two-thirds of the schools  (including Tyrrell), educating 1.5 million Tar Heel students, chose to implement full remote learning for now.

School districts are expanding their online instruction. However, the State Board of Education declined this month to increase enrollment for two virtual charter schools, according to The Associated Press.

School buildings across the state were shuttered in March amid the COVID-19 pandemic and never reopened this past year, the AP said.