Edsby critical in helping manage COVID-19 at Fort McMurray Catholic Schools

Teachers at Fort McMurray Catholic’s Father Beauregard school are among those using Edsby to help remotely facilitate all aspects of teaching, learning, parent communication and rapid response to new virus waves.

District grappling with its worst wave of the pandemic finds it can do everything it needs to with the Edsby K-12 LMS—and not just teaching and learning


With a new, highly infectious wave of the pandemic sweeping through its community, Fort McMurray Catholic Schools finds itself more at risk today than in previous COVID-19 surges. So the district is grateful that its adoption of Edsby has allowed its staff and their 6,500 students and families to stay in touch and continue their learning online.

But that’s only part of the story.

“Obviously the use of Edsby has also been of great benefits to our school administration support and teaching staff,” says Francois Gagnon, Associate Superintendent for Business & Finance, Fort McMurray Catholic Schools. “But our district and school leaders have able to manage effectively through this crisis because of Edsby. Many have stated that their access to Edsby has been a game changer throughout this crisis as it provides them easy and quick access to reliable data.”

The Fort McMurray community was relatively spared in the first and second waves of the pandemic, but is being hit hard with a third wave. Local variants of the virus are proving to be more contagious and appear to spread though children. In recent weeks the school division has sent thousands of students and hundreds of staff into isolation after being in close contact with positive-testing individuals.

Info in Edsby from other district systems key
Unlike simple LMSes, the district credits Edsby for, among other things, the way it incorporates data like attendance from other official district systems and makes it available to educators in an elegant, modern interface.

When a notification of a positive test result is received, the district has had to “scramble to find the homeroom, class and schedule of the students, get a class list with contact information and review attendance data. We then have a few hours to identify and inform all the close contacts. Within 24 hours, we then have to submit a detailed list of close contacts to Public Health,” says Gagnon.

“With access to student information made available to key staff members through Edsby, we are all able to get the necessary information on a real time basis from anywhere. Everyone is able to quickly compile, review and confirm the data we need to respond. Information can quickly be exported and copied into the necessary forms required by other agencies,” says Gagnon.

“We introduced Edsby to our staff at the start of this school year. Little did we know at that time how it would become a critical tool in helping us manage our response to the pandemic,” says Gagnon.

Edsby has even aided official district communication with the outside world. “This program has saved me countless hours and probably gained me a little sleep over the past few months!” says Megan McKenny, Communications Manager, Fort McMurray Catholic Schools. “I am extremely thankful for attendance data in Edsby for contact tracing. Accurate information that can be accessed quickly was a huge help in making our schools a safer place to learn this year.”

More pandemic response
Read how Edsby is helping support K-12 in the time of COVID-19.

How a private school credits Edsby with being key to its response to the virus.

What Edsby is doing to help facilitate pandemic-related learning recovery.