InCommon Steward Program:
Federation for K-14
The InCommon Steward Program extends the benefits of federated identity management to K-12 school districts and community colleges. The Steward (a state or regional network) manages the implementation and InCommon provides the infrastructure and operational experience.
The Steward Program is now in the proof-of-concept stage in partnership with MCNC.
Note that the Steward Program is currently a proof of concept in partnership with MCNC, the North Carolina technology non-profit that owns and operates a leading-edge broadband infrastructure for research, education, non-profit health care, and other community institutions.
The InCommon identity and access management federation provides a common framework for trusted shared management of access to online resources, including single sign-on convenience for individuals at research organizations, higher education institutions, and their corporate partners. Through the Steward Program, those benefits can extend to K-12 school districts and community colleges by way of regional or state networks.
How Does it Work?
The Steward joins InCommon (if not already a participant), enrolls K-12 districts and community colleges in its region, and
manages the technical and business aspects of participating in the InCommon Federation. This relieves the burden from the school districts and community colleges, while allowing them to benefit from participation in an identity and access management federation.
How Does This Benefit My Organization?
Benefits for the Steward
- Enhances collaboration with K-12 and community college members
- Federated identity management reduces support traffic by reducing signons
- Federated IdP increases
security and simplicity by reducing the need for multiple credentials
- Provides access to a national trust infrastructure
and teaching, learning and research services across all of U.S. research and
- Leverages the existing InCommon Federation technical
and support infrastructure
Benefits for the School District and Community College
- New possibilities for sharing of services and software
- Potential seamless transition from one educational level to the next
- Access to national and international resources
- Reduces the number of passwords individuals need to remember, and reduces the likelihood that their credentials will be compromised
- The Steward manages the technical infrastructure, so no need for additional resources and technical expertise