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December 9, 2014
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Now accepting nominations for Canada’s Best Grad Coordinator 2015

Canada's Best Grad Coordinator

Tis the season for giving! To all the reindeer wrangling high school principals and vice principals across Canada, we encourage you to give the gift of thanks and recognition by nominating your amazing teacher volunteer for the  Canada’s Best Grad Coordinator!

 

Each year, Graduation Coordinators give their time to tirelessly organize and arrange the banquets and ceremonies that become the memory making events that commemorate the momentous milestone that is high school graduation. Students and parents rely on the experience of these teacher volunteers as graduation events continue to become larger than life each year. With new advancements in video production and lighting, on top of being tremendous organizers, art stylists, business managers and negotiators, graduation coordinators are also live event directors. Did I mention these super heroes are also mild mannered teachers by day?

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December 4, 2014
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2015 – SchoolTools Scholarship News

InviteRight SchoolTools Scholarship

InviteRight SchoolTools is pleased to announce the return of our scholarship program for graduating high school students across Canada.

Entering its fourth year, the InviteRight SchoolTools Scholarship Program provides recognition to Canadian students with achievements in theatre arts, athletics and volunteering to their graduating class. The program encourages students to be active and involved in their community.

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November 27, 2014
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SchoolTools named District Administration magazine Top 100 Product two years in a row

DA  Magazine Top 100 Products of 2014InviteRight SchoolTools is pleased to be recognized among District Administration magazine’s “Readers’ Choice Top 100 Products for 2014. This is the second consecutive year that SchoolTools has received the distinction.

The winners, selected by District Administration’s editors from a record 2,400-plus nominations, were products that received the highest number of nominations and best descriptions from K12 leaders. The Readers’ Choice Top 100 has been announced online and in the December 2014 issue of District Administration.

The “Top 100″ award informs superintendents and other senior school district leaders about products preferred their colleagues.

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November 20, 2014
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Conference learnings – How to avoid fraud

At three conferences that we attended this past month, a recurring topic of discussion was how school districts can create greater financial transparency to avoid fraud with school generated funds.  With the numerous activities such as field trips and fundraisers happening throughout the year the misappropriation of funds can add up quickly – in some cases costing parents, students and schools over 50k a year. Certain fraud techniques can even persist for years undetected.

How fraud occurs

Fraud occurs funds are misreported or concealed. When there are gaps in financial transparency, transactions that use cash typically become the most susceptible to fraud. However what became alarming to delegates of the conferences that we attended this month was that cheques could be similarly compromised.

In a case study of a middle school, a bookeeper had fraudulently converted various amounts of cash received from numerous sources as a result of fundraising activities, donations, student fees and fees for field trips, etc. resulting in over $60,000. Over the period of 2 years, more than 60 cheques were compromised – some which were re-written to the bookkeeper and others that were issued to service providers even remained unmodified, and all cheques were able to be deposited directly into bookkeeper’s own personal bank account.

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October 31, 2014
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Customer Feature – School Elections

Sometimes a single sentence says it all… especially given that Toronto elected a new mayor this week!

“Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could use your Election Buddy system for our municipal and federal elections? It would be awesome!!!”

Tessa S – Toronto
Thanks Tessa!
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October 29, 2014
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New Feature – Shuffle Order has arrived

As ElectionBuddy users know, we at eventIQ take feedback very seriously because those suggestions have been the driving force that has helped shape ElectionBuddy to become one of the most popular online voting / online election platforms today. We need only to look as far as the popular “Candidate Photo” feature to see how user feedback has made it into the application.
Radomized Ballot

Back in August we asked users what they thought of the new feature, “Shuffle Candidate Order” that we were developing at the time. Sure enough we received tons of great insights that expanded on our original concept.

With Randomized Ballots, once this new feature has been enabled in your online election, each voter will be presented with a ballot that randomizes (shuffles) the order of not only candidates but also of questions. This removes the Ballot Order Effect on voting results: where the first candidate or question is more likely to be selected then the middle – or lower-ordered items.

Visit ElectionBuddy to see an example of this new feature in action.

Best of all, this new feature is FREE with all ElectionBuddy accounts!

Learn more about the fascinating social psychology phenomenon of “Ballot Order Effect” on our previous blog post.

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October 18, 2014
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Extreme Home Makeover – Electionbuddy edition

I used to enjoy watching  show Extreme Home Makeover Home Edition.  And I also really like the makeover we have just released on electionbuddy.com.  We have revamped our home website, with a simplier, cleaner design and tried to showcase what you our millon plus voters and administrators love about electionBuddy.  Feel free to give us feedback on what you think!

To celebrate the new website and also based on your feedback, we have decided to make even more features free.  You can now do printed ballots and custom ballots across all our plans including our FREE plan.  We hope you enjoy.

And also check out our new features:

  • Candidate Shuffle (random presentation) – many of you asked for this, so here you go!
  • Preplanning for new voters mid election – we are laser focused on ensuring that you can offer a democratic anonymous election, but we also know that you want to ensure that new members can join midstream, or sometimes you just don’t have an email address when you are ready to go.  So we added the capability to add keys and convert later, with a full audit trail of the changes.  To try it out – create a test election
  • Sharing voter keys with those stubborn email addresses – sometimes you just need to share a voter key with person who has email address that can’t be reached.  We made it super simple to convert emails to keys, so you can share the key via phone, in person or even deliver it via oxcart so you reach even more voters!
Stay tuned for some other new features coming shortly, and if you have feedback as to what you want to see, let me know, just reply to this post!

 

 

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August 27, 2014
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Customer Feature: Ridgefield High School case study

I chatted today with Scott W  a student government advisor at  Ridgefield High School

And while normally we don’t put testimonials up to protect and ensure the anonymity of our electionbuddy votes, Scott had a pretty interesting story to tell and he was keen to have us share the story about their student government elections..

I had asked him about whether he will be using our new electionbuddy candidate shuffle feature, and he noted that they are considering, but they have (what I thought) was a GREAT tool to encourage student government participation early in the process:

Ridgefield puts candidates on the ballot in the order that they receive the student nomination forms.  It encourages participation, creates a sense of excitement prior to the election, and reduces the last minute panic! Read More…

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August 25, 2014
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Feature Focus: Customize your web link

What is a Form Link?
The Form link is:

* The web address of your form
* The address that you will share with your registrants / ticket purchasers
* You can edit this link at any time – even after you have launched your form.

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August 21, 2014
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New Feature – Shuffle Candidate Order

It’s true, first comes first.

Believe it or not, the order of candidate names on a ballot has an impact on voting results.  “When the candidates are listed first, they have a real advantage.” said Jon Krosnick, co-author of the study and professor of psychology and political science at Ohio State, to the Ohio State Research Communications. “Even in high profile elections such as the presidential race….name order on the ballot can make a big difference.” 

According to Krosnick’s joint study with researchers from Stanford University and the University of Chicago, “[p]ast studies of elections have shown that candidates whose names were listed at the beginning of a list on a ballot often received more votes by virtue of their position.

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