For EPS Families

Family Observer Account - Getting Started 

Our students in middle and high school will continue using the Canvas platform to manage their classwork, access resources, and submit assignments. This will allow you to view your student(s) Canvas account and the work they are doing in their published classes.

This year, family observer accounts have been created using email accounts on file within Skyward. Families will not need a pairing code to create an account.

Access your Canvas Observer Account:

Note: if you created an account during the previous school year, you will still have access to your student(s)’ account using the same login and will not need to use the ‘Forgot Password’ link.

Using the Observer App

Download the Canvas Parent Observer App

See directions to download the app for iOS and Android devices.

Canvas Overview

What is Canvas? 

Canvas is a Learning Management System that organizes classroom materials for students and provides one place to turn in assignments, get feedback from teachers, and organize their calendars with upcoming due dates.

Within Canvas, students view:

Note: final grades are still reported in Skyward Family Access. Canvas assignments may reflect daily practice while Skyward reflects tests and grades.

To learn more about Canvas terminology and definitions, visit How does Canvas define the terms used to describe its features and functions? 

Because Canvas is a web-based system, it doesn’t need to be installed on your computer. However, you’ll want to make sure that your computer and web browser meet the basic requirements to run Canvas.

What is the Family Observer role?

In Canvas, the Observer role can be used to enroll parents, mentors, and guests who would like to participate in a Canvas course but do not need to earn course credit. Observers have limited permissions that allow them to see what is going on in a course without interrupting the flow of daily course communication. Like students, observers cannot view a course until it is published and the course has started.


Set Notification Preferences

Setting Notifications in Canvas Parent

Click the buttons above for directions to adjust the notification and alerts that you receive for your student(s)' Canvas classes. 

Canvas Guides 

Below are some general questions and answers about Canvas, the Observer role, and links to resources to help you be comfortable with Canvas. 

Canvas Overview

Once your account is set up, take a minute to familiarize yourself with the Canvas user interface. The articles below show you how to navigate Canvas and use a few of the tools that link across all your courses.

Course Basics

The main use of the Observer role is to link a user to a student. You can be linked to a student or multiple students and view the student's data in the course. Parents or guardians are often enrolled as observers and linked to students, especially in K12 environments. You cannot submit work on behalf of the students you observe, but you can see student grades, assignments and events, and course interactions. What is available in your course depends on what has been implemented by your student’s instructor.

View the articles below for some of the basics of Canvas courses.

Learn more about Canvas features in the Canvas Basics Guide.


Contact the EPS Digital Learning Department at