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Where Would You Go?
Where Would You Go?
Apr 12, 2024

Canvas vs Skyward

Canvas vs Skyward

All of District 140 uses both Canvas and Skyward. Skyward was created by James R. King in 1980, and many schools around the world use Skyward for schedules, grades, lunch menus, student transportation, and more. Canvas, on the other hand, was created by Instructure, a company, in 2008 but was not released until 2011. Canvas supports grades, classes, schedules, assignment pages, and more.

District 140 uses Skyward at the start of the year for students to see their homeroom and schedules and then mainly utilizes Canvas for grades, assignments, and more. The school’s lunch menu is held on Google Docs. While Skyward is still used by teachers, students mostly forget about it.

I asked Mr. Roth about Canvas and Skyward and their use.

  • Q: Why do we use both Skyward and Canvas?
  • A: “Skyward holds things like emergency contacts and lunch numbers, while Canvas holds grades, assignments, and classes. Before COVID, teachers were using many different grading sites like Google Classroom, and the district wanted a centralized site, so we ended up with Canvas. It also helped parents because they only needed to visit one site or app instead of multiple.”
  • Q: Why don’t they just switch to Canvas for everything?
  • A: “Canvas focuses purely on academics; therefore, we need Skyward to store essential information that Canvas does not, like addresses or transportation info.”
  • Q: Are you aware that students don’t use Skyward?
  • A: “Yes, and that’s somewhat intentional. Canvas is primarily for grades and assignments, which is where we want our students to focus. Skyward is more geared towards adults and their needs.”
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