NC SIS Weekly Email Bulletin

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February 12, 2021

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Digital Teaching and Learning


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NC SIS Weekly Email Bulletin

Topics in this issue:

1.  Get Ready for the Next Round of Home Base Meet Ups!

2.  Next Home Base Maintenance Period 

3.  NCWiseOwl Firewall Settings

4.  2020-2021 Instructional School Start and End Dates

5.  Culturally Relevant Spring 2021 Curriculum Team Intensive

6.  Reminder:  Use of Emojis in PowerSchool Teacher Pro

7.. Reminder:  2021 Twice Retained 

8.. Reminder:  TIMS Update

9.  Home Base Webinars

10.  Focus 5:  Featuring Union County Public Schools  

11.  Follow us on Social Media

12.  NCDPI Technology Support Center 

Home Base Meet Ups

Get Ready for the Next Round of Home Base Meet Ups!

The Home Base Meet Ups are almost here! 

Our next set of Home Base Meet Ups are scheduled for Feb. 15-19. These information packed, collaborative meetings will be held virtually for all Home Base products.  For more information and registration details, please link to the 2020-2021 February HBMU Invite.


We look forward to meeting, networking, and sharing ideas!

Don't Miss This


Next Home Base Maintenance Period

The next Home Base maintenance is scheduled for February 19, 2021.  Currently, PowerSchool is the only known application that will undergo maintenance.  All other Home Base applications will remain available.


The PowerSchool application will be brought down for one night onlyFriday, February 19 at 7 p.m. and returned to service by 7 a.m., Saturday morning, February 20.  The application will be made accessible to all users once maintenance is complete.


Note:  Each year, a list of scheduled maintenance windows are published by NCDPI.  This is published in advance to help teachers and administrators better prepare for temporary outages and loss of access.  Please review the 2020-2021 maintenance schedule and put these dates on your calendar. In most cases, the entire window is not necessary and we can return systems to service earlier than listed. If emergency maintenance is required in addition to these scheduled dates, all users will be notified in advance. 


NCWiseOwl Firewall Settings

Britannica School recently updated their recommended firewall settings.  Without appropriate settings the resources may not authenticate, show improperly in browser, and/or have limited functionality. It may also be helpful to give priority to The settings can be found on the technical support page in the toolkit: 

For questions or concerns, please contact Cynthia Sartain at

Reporting Deadline

2020-2021 Instructional School Start and End Dates   


G.S. 115C-84.2(a2) specifies that a report on the start and end dates of the instructional calendar for students for the next academic year be provided to the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the State Board of education by April 1 of each year.  To make this deadline, the start and end dates of the instructional calendar for students for each school must be in PowerSchool before April 1. 


School Start and End Dates for 2021-22 will be pulled immediately after April 1, 2021. 


Culturally Relevant Spring 2021 Curriculum Team Intensive

“The paradox of education is precisely this - that as one begins to become conscious, one begins to examine the society in which he/she is being educated.” -James Baldwin


Are you part of a team that is interrogating your curriculum for opportunities to be culturally relevant, responsive and sustaining? Join other educators across NC to build the capacity of your team and your resources.


The NC Department of Public Instruction and its GoOpenNC platform is facilitating a Culturally Relevant Teaching (CRT) Intensive that engages educators on a cultural and identity reflection with direct application to curriculum resources. 


Participants will engage alongside state and national facilitators in a nine-week webinar series that explores competencies of CRT and integrates these competencies into curriculum resources that can be openly shared across the state of NC. Read more here about the schedule, facilitators, and community. 


Participants are encouraged to register and participate with a group of educators in their school or district within a common content area to increase their capacity at their local level. Educator teams will bring a curricular resource to workshop throughout the Intensive and share openly with other participants across NC using the GoOpenNC platform. Team members will be eligible to earn 1.2 CEUs in Digital Learning and 1.0 CEUs in Content Area.


Apply here by Monday, February 22.


Reminder:  Use of Emojis in PowerTeacher Pro

The Transfer Student Record process fails when emojis are included in teacher comments.  A ticket has been submitted to PowerSchool requesting a fix to allow the use of emojis for future versions.  In the meantime, please request teachers to refrain from using emojis in final grade comments when using the PowerTeacher Pro gradebook.

NC Students in a Digital Learning Environment

Reminder:  2021 Twice Retained

Please share with the appropriate staff the attachment from Amy Rhyne, Ed. S, Office of Early Learning. 

NC School Bus

Reminder:  TIMS Update

PowerSchool and NCDPI have determined that adding quotes in fields throws off the alignment of data within the TIMS Report. Please do not add quotes in any PowerSchool fields.  Prior to exporting the TIMS report, please verify and remove quotes from all contact and transportation fields within your PowerSchool instance. Before importing into TIMS, please verify that the exported file has no lines which begin and end with quotes. If quotes exist the student records must be corrected and the file exported again.


Also, please ensure the CR/LF line delimiter is used when creating files.




Pre-Recorded State Reporting Webinars 


Spring 2021 Course Code Webinar Series

Please join the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) for a Spring 2021 course code webinar series. PowerSchool Data Managers, PowerSchool Coordinators, School Counselors, Career and Technical Education Directors, Career Development Coordinators, CCP Coordinators, and Curriculum and Instruction/Academic Leaders are encouraged to join the conversations. Please see details below and we look forward to seeing you (virtually) soon! 




Time:  2 - 3 pm EST

Platform:  Webex

Dates and Registration Information:


Questions? Please enter your questions in the Question Collection Form.


Canvas Red logo

Canvas PD Mini-Course - Crafting High Quality Feedback in Canvas


Our next Canvas mini-course is now open for self-registration in NCEES. Learn all about the different ways you can give high quality feedback in Canvas.


This course is designed to be completed in one hour, and upon course completion, 0.1 CEU of Digital Learning Competency Credit will be applied to your transcript in NCEES (within 48 hours).


Register here (must login to NCEdCloud):


New Self-Paced Course on Curating Content in #GoOpenNC

We are so excited to try something new with our monthly webinars for #GoOpenNC. The webinar is now available on-demand in a mini Canvas course (you will need to login to NCEES via NCEdCloud to register).


The course is designed to be completed in one hour and NCEES will apply 0.1 CEU of Digital Learning Competency Credit to your transcript within 48 hours of completing the course.  The course is available until May 31, 2021

#GoOpenNC Logo

New Mini-Course: Remix and Add Your Own Content to #GoOpenNC!


Our next #GoOpenNC mini-course is now available for self-registration on NCEES. Learn how to remix and add your own resources to #GoOpenNC.


Each mini-course is designed to take one hour to complete and within 48 hours of course completion, 0.1 CEU of Digital Learning Competency Credit will be applied to your transcript!


Register here (must login to NCEdCloud):

New Collections Available in #GoOpenNC

The #GoOpenNC team is excited to launch a new learning hub on the platform for Advanced Learning. On the hub, you will find over 200 lesson plans for Academically and Intellectually Gifted learners! 


Save the Date: RISE OER Online UnConference


Feb. 25, 2:30-5 p.m.

Register Now

Join us for a FREE UnConference virtual learning opportunity to collaborate with educators from North Carolina and Virginia on Open Education Resources and Digital Learning. Our purpose is to collaborate together to RISE above challenges in teaching and learning during (and after) a pandemic! CEU credit available for attendance.


NCWiseOwl EBSCO Webinars 2020-2021 

PSUs, please share this message with your teachers.

Want to love and utilize NCWiseOwl even more?  Attend the upcoming webinars available from our database vendors! 



  • Britannica School for Remote Learning 
  • Britannica School for Parents 
  • Britannica Basics for Elementary Educators 
  • Britannica Basics for Secondary Educators 
  • Sharing Britannica Content on Google Platforms 
  • Preparing Digital Content Sets for Instruction 
  • Britannica Tools to Support Reluctant Readers 
  • Britannica School - STEAM in Focus 
  • Britannica School - Arts & Humanities in Focus 
  • Britannica Tools to Support English Language Learners 


  • EBSCO Reference Center Exploration 
  • EBSCO Online Classroom Tools and Integration Tips 
  • EBSCO Accessibility and Usability Features within EBSCO Resources
  • EBSCO Working with EBSCO eBooks

Please visit the NCWiseOwl  Toolkit  professional learning section for detailed descriptions and registration links.


Focus 5

Focus Five

Featuring:  Union County Public Schools
Contributor:  Casey Rimmer

Focus Five is a fairly new addition to our DTL and Home Base newsletters that highlights 5 successes PSUs have implemented within their school system to enhance remote learning.  This week we are featuring Union County.


1. Professional Development
We began creating modules to help teachers get what they needed from our professional development.  Many teachers were at different stages of adoption of the LMS, familiarity of video conferencing and remote instruction practices.  We created on-demand modules that cover hundreds of topics- ranging from Using Google Draw for Physical Education projects to using SMART Learning Suite to provide formative assessment opportunities allowing each teacher to personalize their professional learning. 

2. One LMS
UCPS was able to expand Canvas as the single LMS for students, teachers and stakeholders over the summer.  This has assisted staff to target their support for students and parents creating a library of resources to help parents navigate the platform.  Professional development has been focused on modeling good lesson format and how to use Canvas for highly effective instructional strategies. 

3. Supporting School Based Support
School based coaches have a Microsoft Team and regular “lunch and learn” sessions to collaborate with one another and district level staff to mitigate issues, create resources and support teachers and students. 

4. Innovation Showcase 
Provided bi-weekly opportunity for teachers that are doing innovative things in the classroom to share what they are doing, how it is impacting their students and how they learned about it.  These meetings are live, recorded and archived for flexibility in viewing.  Teachers covered topics from how they use Canvas, how they welcome students and how they streamline communication with parents and students.  These sessions are 30 minutes long, consisting mostly of teachers sharing their unique strategy. 

5. “Ask Me Anything” Rooms
Support staff, including curriculum and instructional technology support, hold open office hours weekly and extended hours on teacher workdays.  This allows any teachers, including those who may be remote, or have questions to tune in and ask their questions.  Questions range from gradebook setup to how to turn traditional lessons into lessons that are accessible from home for hybrid/remote students.


UCPS Professional Dev


Please join us in giving a shout out to Union County! 


Follow Us on Social Media!

Follow us on Facebook and begin receiving "Did You Know" tips featuring each Home Base product. 


These messages will include upcoming changes, tips and even hidden treasures within each product to make your job easier.  If you are not following us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, click on the links below and begin today!  Make sure you share this information with other staff within your school.


Instagram:  @nchomebase         Facebook:  @nchomebase       Twitter:  @nchomebase

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NCDPI Technology Support Center

NCDPI's Technology Support Center continues to meet your support needs for:

  • Schoolnet 
  • NCEES/Unified Talent
  • IAM/SSO (NCEdCloud) 
  • Staff & Student UID (eScholar)

Support availability:

Web (NEW URL)   -  24/7

Phone:  919-716-1840, Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. (excluding state holidays)

Technical support for SIS needs is handled directly by PowerSchool support using chat, phone, or by opening a case ticket. 

Remember to visit the NC SIS website for additional information including webinars and training documentation.  Follow us on twitter @NCHomeBase



 NC Department of Public Instruction

 Education Building, 7th Floor North

 301 North Wilmington Street

 Raleigh, NC 27601