Canva boosts productivity in Berkeley County Schools with 18,000 hours saved annually

About Berkeley County Schools

Berkeley County Schools(opens in a new tab or window) is a diverse educational institution with 19,000 students excelling in academics, arts, and athletics.

The district comprises four high schools, six middle schools, six intermediate schools, and 16 elementary schools.

With a focus on safe, inclusive, and adaptive learning, Berkeley County Schools aims to inspire and empower students, equipping them with transferable real-world skills through Canva for Education(opens in a new tab or window).

The Challenge

One of the primary challenges Berkeley County Schools faced was finding a one-stop, easy-to-use platform to support content creation by students and teachers.

Teachers and students resorted to lengthy and complex processes to find, download, and re-upload media, which took valuable time away from teaching and learning.

“Before Canva, as an English reading teacher, I was struggling to find a single place where I could have students create,” says Joshua Meadows, a middle school teacher at Berkeley County Schools.

“A lot of the modern educational world has moved past the five-paragraph essay and formulaic writing. We need rich content within the materials we ask our students to create – and that was really hard to do in other suites of software.”

As a result, workflows at Berkeley County Schools were often bottlenecked. Inserting a video into a document previously took upwards of two hours, making the creative process daunting for many.

“When I started using Canva more, it allowed students to really be creative and come up with some new innovative ways to prepare projects in class,” says Julie Oldfield, an English teacher at Mountain Ridge Middle School, in Berkeley County Schools district. “Whereas before, it was more of a one-size-fits-all. Now, students can drive what they’re doing based on a wider variety of tools, use the different templates which help them with their thinking and grow them even further.”

Upon implementing Canva, Berkeley County Schools was able to equip students with various templates and tools to facilitate learning.

The Solution

Using Canva solved the past inefficiencies of Berkeley County Schools, unlocking a more collaborative, efficient, and creative educational experience.

Canva’s various Education templates, including Talking Presentations, Whiteboards, videos, posters, and infographics have been particularly beneficial to educators across the district.

“As a teacher, Canva is the only platform I use to create content for students,” says Joshua. “We can instantly comment, annotate, and improve each other's work using a singular platform that's easy to use and relatively hassle-free. People catch on pretty quick with Canva – even people who aren't huge technology fans like it, so that's been huge.”

The district's use of Canva as a content management system (CMS) has also substantially improved the security of student data. The single sign-on (SSO) feature ensures students can safely access the platform without risking data breaches.

Saving time and money across the board

In their quest for efficiency, one solution stands out: strategically organizing and managing digital resources.

"As a district, we put together a website inside Canva that advertised a short link allowing us to enter Canva directly through our Berkeley website. Now, Canva shows up as an app inside our suite of resources, so there’s easy entry to Canva for both students and teachers,” says Derek Oldfield, Instructional Technology Specialist at Berkeley County Schools.

The ability to track important folders, branded templates, and various media, coupled with the capacity to share these assets with staff and students on a large scale has transformed Berkeley County Schools’ productivity.

Berkeley County Schools uses Canva’s Brand Hub to collate brand templates, school logos, and media in a centralized spot.

“Students and teachers are doing all of their work on Canva, all project planning, graphic organization, research gathering – it’s all being collected through Canva with classroom groups and collaborative templates,” says Julie.

Teachers can immediately access pre-made education templates in Canva, expediting lesson planning. Using Whiteboards further encourages efficient, real-time collaboration among staff and students.

“Canva has become a major time-saving aid in the classroom for myself as a teacher,” says Julie.

The Berkeley County Schools team uses Whiteboards for efficient lesson planning and to encourage cross-collaboration between students and staff.

For educators across the district, Canva saves them an average of one hour per week, resulting in an impressive total of approximately 18,000 hours saved annually.

With Canva for Education, Berkeley County Schools educators save 18,000 hours annually when creating content.

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“Canva saves me at least three to four hours per week when I create content. Every single thing I make is on Canva because everything I need is in one location and it’s easy to use.”

Joshua Meadows

Middle school teacher, Berkeley County Schools

Students have a newfound excitement and pride in their Canva creations and projects, leading to increased adoption among teaching staff. Now, it's common to see teachers proudly showcasing what their students have achieved in the classroom and boasting about how much time they save.

“Canva is the solution to a problem I didn’t know I had,” says Joshua.

And the financial savings are equally impressive. Since the Canva For Education rollout, the district has saved an estimated $464,000 in design software costs.

Berkeley County Schools has saved $464,000 in design software costs with Canva.

Freeing up time and creativity

Canva’s suite of AI-powered tools has given Berkeley County teachers a safe and trusted environment to experiment and enhance their creativity.

Magic Write, in particular, has helped staff create engaging content more efficiently.

“In almost every case of using Magic Write, teachers have generally just kept what was generated from AI – we rarely have to make any tweaks. That's been really strong,” says Derek.

“Because they're already using Canva, and they trust Canva, it’s a place of comfort. They don't know anything about other AI tools. Magic Write has been a gateway for them to explore other time-saving tools.”

Canva's Video Background Remover has been a game changer in the district's video editing as well, allowing teachers to remove unwanted video backgrounds in seconds for student broadcasts. This has automated routine tasks, freeing up teachers to focus on more critical aspects of their work.

“We would record students for 20 to 25 minutes, upload it into Canva with a template, and then the editing took only an hour at most for a seven to 10-minute daily broadcast,” says Julie. “If you can imagine putting something together like that without a template, it would have taken hours.”

Building a brighter future for students

Berkeley County Schools knows meaningful work enhances learning experiences for students.

Their use of Canva not only engages students in class, it's preparing them for a future increasingly reliant on visual content creation. By providing students with the tools to visually create and evaluate within a useful context, Canva is helping to equip them with the skills they'll need in the workforce.

Canva for Education helps prepare and empower students for real-world situations in the workforce.

Canva’s planning and assessment tools allow teachers to implement more future-focused learning techniques.

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"For students, I've seen more ownership of their content. Students have been more invested in making presentations and projects using Canva than I've ever had them be invested.”

Joshua Meadows

Middle school teacher, Berkeley County Schools

Berkeley County Schools is part of a statewide Canva rollout, with all 55 counties actively bringing Canva into their classrooms in partnership with the West Virginia Department of Education.

With its existing 8K+ Canva users, Berkeley County Schools estimates their use of the platform will only continue to expand as more teachers discover the ease of Canva's AI-powered writing assistant and other time-saving tools.

“I would recommend Canva to all educators as a must-have for their classroom,” says Julie.

As more educational institutions look for ways to optimize their resources and processes, Berkeley County Schools’ success serves as an inspiring blueprint for others to follow.

“Canva plays such an important role in our district-wide initiative of increasing rigor. There's so many ways you can take content and increase complexity, depth and challenge through these creative projects in Canva.”
Derek Oldfield
Instructional Technology Specialist at Berkeley County Schools
Hours saved annually by Berkeley County Schools educators using Canva for Education
Savings in design software costs

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