Brainstorm EdTech Conference: Abre Proposal

//Brainstorm EdTech Conference: Abre Proposal

Why and What?

Abre is an open-platform that hosts education apps. Technology should make life easier. Abre does.

Abre works really well with the Google and Microsoft ecosystems. Indeed, it’s critical to support the 1:1 Chromebook initiative at Hamilton City School District.

Abre is free and opensource. Created by educators and edTechs who believe in the power of exploration and tinkering.


Zach Vander Veen is the Technology Director for Hamilton City School District (Ohio) and cofounder of Abre. His Bio can be viewed at

Outline of the Presentation

Areas of Focus

This presentation will focus on Abre Apps and Core Functions that pertain to IT staff and their roles in supporting the district.


IT Staff

Skill Level:

All levels


  1. Demonstrate the Abre platform and key Abre Apps.
  2. Demonstrate how Abre supports 1:1 initiatives in school. This includes Google Apps management, secure browser, inventory management, and help desk tickets.
  3. Provide an example how Abre leverages students to support the IT staff in Chromebook maintenance.
  4. Explore how Abre can be used as a SSO solution for 3rd party tools
  5. Outline how participants can create their own Abre Apps to solve particular problems in developing Abre Apps.

Defining the Challenge:

Abre grew from a need. The Hamilton City School District faced a large growth in devices used by students and staff. The complexity of managing various software packages increased. Moreover, many school applications were dated or completely lacking in function. Data frequently was siloed and difficult access and understand. Also, software was expensive.

Developing a Solution:

We decided to use modern web standards to create an open-source platform districts could use to host and create their own apps. The Abre platform runs on a web server and integrates with the most common educational ecosystems like Google, Microsoft, LMSs, and SISs. Abre hosts internal apps that serve particular functions. For example: A helpdesk app integrates with Google accounts to track and coordinate Chromebook repairs.

Evidence of Success:

Hamilton has run Abre for three years. It is the backbone of all district applications: From IT support, to human resources, to parent communications and interactions. We’ve grown successful enough that other districts have implemented Abre as well.