Geneva switches to a new LMS starting Fall of 2022


Benjamin Modaff-Heuser, Guest Contributor

On December 13th, Geneva’s Board of Education approved the adoption of Schoology, a Learning Management System (LMS), for the high school starting in the fall of 2022. Currently, Geneva High School does not have one common learning platform that all teachers and students use universally, and as a result, it was time for everyone to be on the same platform.

“The biggest reason for the switch to Schoology is having a common platform for all students and teachers in the school,” Geneva High School Teacher Jason Bhatta a Geneva High School teacher said. “The pandemic and the effect it had on learning and teaching was huge and there was a lot of feedback on the difficulties of students having to navigate multiple learning platforms (Google Classroom, Teams, Schoology, etc.) to access classwork, homework, etc.”

Many problems erupted last year when students became overwhelmed and confused as to where to go and how to complete their work during hybrid and remote learning. The constant change of an online program sparked concern amongst students and teachers as many navigated upwards of two to three different learning programs.  The hope is that the cohesion of a common platform will make it easier for both students and teachers when completing classwork.

Choosing Schoology was no quick decision.

“The platform was chosen through an intensive vetting process,” Bhatta said. “The decision to investigate learning management systems was made by the administration of the district and the school and other building leaders and then a committee was created to look into the various options and why one may be better than another. The decision was made after 8-10 months of work by the committee and then a formal presentation of the plan to adopt Schoology as the LMS for GHS was brought to the BOE for approval.”

For eight to ten months, faculty members have been searching and trying our different platforms to make online learning simple and effective. Teachers have exhausted a great deal of effort to help make online learning easier for the students to learn. The hope is that Schoology will provide a new organized system where teachers can smoothly and easily distribute information for students, preventing stress.

“Every class will be required to use Schoology,” Bhatta said. “How each class uses it may vary and those discussions are ongoing in terms of what that requirement will be and how that may change over the course of the 5 years GHS has the contract with Schoology, but the simple answer is yes, all classes will be required to use Schoology as their LMS.”

For the next five years, GHS will be required to use the program Schoology. Schoology will be the base for the all classes and will act as a hub for all information given in class. Schoology will also bring together other online learning sources to make learning and navigating that much more effective and easier – such as integrating One Note.

“The big goal is to create a more consistent experience for our teachers and our students so that does mean we will be moving to Schoology for the new LMS platform,” Mike Wilkes, Director of Technology for the district, said. “Next year at the high school that would mean that if a teacher is doing an online assignment or online classwork which we could see all teachers doing next year then they would be using Schoology as a platform for doing that.”

To have a common and organized LMS in place would create a lot less stress for students and teachers alike. Having the opportunity to reduce the stress and weight of assignments on students will be a delightful change.