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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (March 15, 2016) – Educators and administrators from around the world gathered in St. Pete Beach, Florida for the 14th annual Skyward International Conference (iCon) last week. The three-day interactive event provided attendees with access to the latest news in product development from the leading K-12 software provider, as well as one-on-one interaction with district peers, industry experts, and Skyward executives.

Based on the theme “Quest for Success,” iCon sessions featured presentations on emerging trends, harnessing the power of learning analytics, and increasing engagement of students and staff. In addition, attendees learned more about transitioning from manual to digital processes, increasing transparency among staff to encourage teamwork, and facilitating goal-setting and decision-making through the effective use of data.

“The education environment is ever-changing, and we know that districts face many challenges each day,” said Scott Glinski, president of Skyward. “iCon is a great networking opportunity for our district partners to come together with Skyward’s leadership team and technology experts. We share ways to help district leaders meet and overcome challenges and collaborate with our users to brainstorm ideas that will shape the future of our products and services.”

For the second year at iCon, Skyward honored the recipients of its Leader in Excellence Award, an accolade that recognizes K-12 districts and individual administrators using Skyward to make a difference in education and inspire new ideas and initiatives.

Individual recipients:

  • Jeff Bushman, director of technology at Pacelli Catholic Schools in Stevens Point, Wisconsin
  • Sonja Hoskins, data services manager at School District of La Crosse in La Crosse, Wisconsin
  • Michael Heaps, support services manager at Jordan School District in West Jordan, Utah

District recipients:
  • Sauk Rapids-Rice School District, Minnesota
  • Lewisville Independent School District, Texas
  • Center Grove School Corporation, Indiana

In addition to awarding the 2016 Leader in Excellence winners, Skyward revealed its new Family Access Toolkit. 

The launch kit will assist districts in the implementation of the award-winning online portal. Family Access connects educators and parents by providing a wealth of information on assignments, test scores, attendance, fees and more. The digital toolkit will provide valuable resources including how-to videos, printable handouts, and troubleshooting tips designed for teachers, parents and students.

The company also announced new developments within its Professional Development Center (PDC), an online university available for Student Management Suite and School Business Suite users. The PDC, first launched in 2014, now boasts more than 81,737 registered users and has awarded about 10,143 course certificates.

“This is an awesome conference that meets all needs – great learning, great location, and great opportunities to network with other districts,” said Kristi Hoffine, director of secondary instruction at Bonner SpringsEdwardsville USD 204 in Kansas.

To see the social media moments captured at iCon 2016, go to

Next year’s international conference is slated for Wednesday, March 8 – Friday, March 10, 2017 at TradeWinds Island Resort in St. Pete Beach, Florida. For more information on Skyward iCon, visit