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Community Member

Canvas and PowerSchool Sync

Is there a way Canvas can automatically sync SIS information and Courses from PowerSchool?

6 Replies
Community Coach
Community Coach

Hello michaeleverett‌...

Our school doesn't use PowerSchool, so I won't be able to directly answer your question.  However, I wanted to let you know that I am going to share your question with the group here in the Canvas this is where a lot of PowerSchool discussions take place.  Hopefully, by sharing your question with this group, it will get some additional exposure.  If you are not yet following this group here in the Community, you can click on the link that I have provided and then click on the "Follow" button at the top right corner of the page.  Good luck!

Community Participant

Hi michaeleverett,

We import SIS info from PowerSchool to Canvas, including all Courses and student enrollment. 

With the PowerTeacher Pro update, the api is being updated right now so the sync is on pause.

The PowerSchool SIS Sync and Grade Passback is our #1 favorite aspect of Canvas. (Speedgrader is a close #2)

Community Contributor

Hi  @jfrielich_ls ‌,

How is your passback going since the PTP update?  We are having TONS of issues with importing categories, Canvas saying Successful export of grades and them not showing in PS, assignment dates being changed from Canvas to PS (resulting in the assignments going into a different grading period), etc.  I talked with my CSM and some pretty high level SIS Integration team members today, and I can't say they made me feel great about things...  Is your district having success?  gradepassback ptp powerteacher pro powerschool grades

Community Participant

Hi  @jcrawford ‌,

Passback is a challenge. I'm happy that we have a working solution for passback with PowerTeacher Pro so quickly. Experiencing all these difficulties make me appreciate the quality of Beta testing Canvas typically conducts prior to production releases, and I know that these issues are being worked out - the process is slightly backwards but only because the PowerTeacher Pro roll out was so rapid.

Gradebook updates are in beta right now, in about a month, once beta has been pushed to production and a few more bugs have been worked out I will create a guide to syncing grades for my county and will post here as well.

For now, my suggestion is to check your "Monitoring and Reporting" "Grade Sync" and see what errors are being returned. It is a very sensitive sync, so there may be something small that isn't set up correctly.

I have found many issues within the monitoring and reporting screen, some of which I understand and correct, some I am unable to figure out solutions for. I would say we are able to use passback but have to continuously double check and make sure grades are syncing. (This is a very different procedure for me, last year I hardly ever signed into PowerTeacher Gradebook.)

Additionally if you are following the same procedures as last year to set up courses, DON'T...

With the new PowerTeacher Pro integration, teacher should set up their PowerTeacher Pro Gradebooks FIRST, creating assignment Categories in PTP Gradebook. Let 24 hours pass so that the SIS import can pull your PTP Gradebook Assignment Categories in. Then teachers go into each course, navigate to assignments, then import assignment groups. If an assignment group already exists in Canvas with the same name as one being imported from - and thus linked to - the PowerTeacher Pro Gradebook, Canvas will skip the group. So basically if you are doing the same process as past years, teachers a re creating assignment groups in Canvas that will prevent a link to be formed with PTP Gradebook. You will know if things a are linked by navigating to assignments and seeing a symbol next to ALL assignment groups, a paper with an arrow into it. This was the biggest set back we had, and teachers that didn't follow my "WAIT TO CREATE ASSIGNMENT GROUPS IN CANVAS" instructions could easily correct the issue by editing ALL Canvas assignment group names; the easiest thing to do is add "(Canvas)" to the end of each group name. Then importing the PTP Groups in Canvas Assignment page. Then I have them drag the assignment to the correct linked group and remove the "....(Canvas)" groups. Then they would set up the weighting if they are displaying grade totals. 

WOW!!! There I go on one of my Canvas tangents. I hope this can help. 

I am confident that Grade Passback will continue to be enhanced and for now all we can do is try to follow the guides and hope for the best.

Community Participant

We are new to Canvas, just launching over the summer. We have been hesitant to set up the PowerSchool grade passback since our CSM has been unable to provide a single contact at any other school district that we could talk to first to discuss how well it is working for them. I found this thread and it sounds like the passback is still  buggy. Would you advise holding off on it for now? We will be upgrading to PS11 in November - is anyone already using the grade passback with PS11? Thanks!

Community Member

Is there a way when Canvas syncs each night with PowerSchool it only syncs the numerical grade and not the submission of 'late, with a red box." I remove them in Power School, but each day they appear, I have tried / checked it twice.