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Update Usernames to Email Addresses: The Privacy Pledge (video)

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As announced in late July 2020, Foundry is moving to conform to best practices in privacy. While safeguarding student privacy is ultimately the responsibility of each school, not Foundry, we are working to ensure you have the best tools to fulfill this responsibility. 

We believe so strongly in supporting you in this that we signed the Student Privacy Pledge. One important consequence of this that directly impacts you is that Foundry will be adopting email addresses as usernames. This article explains how to complete that process.



Why We Are Doing This

When Do I Need to Do This?

Part 1: Update the Admin Account

Part 2: Add Valid Email Addresses



Why We Are Doing This

Currently, Foundry user passwords are not encrypted, so all admin users (including the appropriately credentialed Foundry staff) can view and change them. This is clearly useful if a non-admin user (teacher, student, parent) forgets the password. 


But, to conform to the pledge, passwords must now be encrypted. This means Foundry needs to implement a password reset feature, familiar to you on most password-protected sites you use.

Separately, the Foundry database is expanding and adding “district” users, where one user may be present in several related sites (like an admin responsible for two district schools). This and other reasons require Foundry to guarantee unique usernames across the entire database. Using a valid email address prevents duplication.



When Do I Need to Do This?

There is no hard deadline for this switch, although we expect to complete it during the current calendar year, and we plan to begin now. We will assist all schools in making the switch. In addition, we will add this to the Help Center with instructional videos, and we will check on progress and understanding in our periodic check-ins with you. 

This is a two-part task:

Part 1: ensure you have set up an admin account with a valid email address.

Part 2: ensure every active user on your Foundry site has an email address listed in the “email” field of their user profile. 

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Part 1: Update the Admin Account Email Address

Example: admin_dns@domain.com

     What do we mean by that? And why do we need it?

For setup and troubleshooting assistance, Foundry staff will continue to need to periodically log into either your live site* or a testing site, using an account named  “Admin Admin” (a first and last name is always required). We are asking ALL customers, regardless of how long you have been using Foundry, to establish this account if you have not already.

This admin account MUST have a valid email address added to it, which consists of a handle + domain. Here’s how to set that up:

Handle (the first part of an address): The recommended handle is ‘admin_dns’, where dns is replaced by the first part of your site name. For example, our demonstration school, Apple Valley Academy, uses the URL ava.projectfoundry.net. “Ava” is our dns. 

Domain (the second part): @gmail.com, @yahoo.com, @yourschool.edu, etc. As long as you can log into and control access to the domain, it doesn’t matter which you choose. We use the email domain @projectfoundry.com. 

So ... Apple Valley Academy would establish an Admin with the e-mail address admin_ava@projectfoundry.com

If you currently have a user in your Foundry site called “Admin” (or similar), add the correct email address (as described above) to the user’s “email address” field.

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Part 2: Add Valid Email Addresses to ALL User Profiles* 

There are two main ways to accomplish this: you can edit each user individually, or batch edit user emails.


Option 1: Edit each individual username manually:

This option is simple - but labor-intensive if you have more than a few dozen users.

>>> watch first <<<

  1. Navigate  to Admin > Users
  2. In the Username field, type the email address. When you hit 'enter,' a blue checkbox appears. 
  3. Click the save icon (the little floppy to the right). You can make multiple changes first, but you must save each entry individually, or the edits will be lost when your page reloads.
  4. Once you have saved all your changes, notify the Foundry Support Team by sending an email to support@projectfoundry.com with the subject line “Usernames updated”.

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Option 2: Batch Edit all your usernames:

This option is much less labor-intensive and strongly recommended for schools with more than say, 15-20 users. 

However, there are a few potential pitfalls, so please read the following carefully.

>>>watch first<<<


  1. Navigate to Admin > Users
  2. Export your current users in the following way: At the top of the user list, check the box to the left of the “Last Name” header to select all users, then click “Export selected users."
    • Note: If you click “Export Selected” with no users selected, you will get ALL your users, including those marked “inactive” (where applicable). The same will happen if you select “Existing User Spreadsheet Export” from the Batch Upload/Edit Menu.
  3. Open the resulting spreadsheet and enter email addresses in the “email Address” column
    • Note: Foundry will not overwrite usernames with email addresses via batch upload. Our developers will copy the email field to the username field after you have uploaded it.
  4. The following warnings are very important!
    • Do not change the column headers or column order.
    • DO NOT CHANGE THE SORT ORDER IN THE EXPORTED SPREADSHEET.  Records will be sorted by last name, but not also by first name. If you change the sort order and upload, Foundry will not match the old and “new” usernames, and will put emails in the wrong place. If you plan to cut and paste a large amount of data, you will need to watch this very carefully.
  5. Once all your user emails are in the “email Address” column of the sheet, save it.
  6. Navigate to Admin > Users > Batch Upload and Edit
  7. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Choose File”
  8. Select your saved spreadsheet from your computer (unless you moved it, it will be in your “downloads” folder), and click “open.”
  9. You will see the saved name of the file where it previously said “No file chosen”. To the right, click “Preview User Import.” 
  10. On the next screen, Foundry will alert you to any errors and give you the line number containing the error. You may be able to fix the error directly on the page. If the page contains MANY errors or alerts, you may have to check your sort order and re-upload the corrected spreadsheet.
  11. Once you have saved all your changes, notify the Foundry Support Team by sending an email to support@projectfoundry.com with the subject line “Usernames updated.”
  12. The Development Team will convert the emails to your new usernames.
  13. The Support Team will notify you when the work is complete and you can log in to Foundry using your new email usernames.


*Note: If any of your students or parents does not have a valid email address, you can add a dummy address into this field, like “adam@zany.com(not a real email address)

However, any password assistance for these users will need to be handled by those with admin privileges. This means that admin users MUST use a unique AND valid email address for their own usernames

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Suggested Reading:

Note: Articles linked here under "Suggested Reading" are chosen by Foundry Support team members for their relevance and are updated as needed. The articles listed here may differ from those on the right side of the page, where the Knowledge Base AI lists "Related Articles." 


Add a New User

Add Multiple Users: Batch Upload

Edit Multiple Users

Labels: log in, privacy, usernames,
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