It’s a snow day – the whole school needs to be notified. How do you currently let everyone know? If you’re old school, you’ll be huddled round listening to local radio for the first time that year, fingers crossed for a day off (kids)/ school to be open (parents).
In recent times, email, Facebook and Twitter have become ubiquitous but can be time-consuming and hit-and-miss. Not everyone checks their inboxes or social media on a regular basis, so many schools have turned to text messaging as a more reliable method of reaching parents and carers. This holds three big disadvantages:
Limited to just 160 characters
Text messaging services can cost an average of 4p per message, and whilst text bundles are offered, schools can be at a loss as to how many messages they will need and over- or under-order, making budgeting hit and miss.
There is also the cost in time and energy of the poor soul who has to keep on top of changing work/home phone numbers, new carer contact number or replacement numbers for phones that have accidentally gone in the wash!
While unforeseen circumstances can call for an unexpected broadcast of messages, the day-to-day life of a school also necessitates constant contact with parents and carers. Relating expected ETA from a field trip, reminding of materials needed for an art project or diarising an end-of-year theatre production for the drama society – there are endless reasons to contact parents.
Nor are points of admin the sole reason for schools to contact home. Parental engagement has finally been recognised as a necessary component of successful educational outcomes, indeed, the level of engagement between school and parent/ carer constitutes an important facet of a school’s Ofsted/ Estyn grading. Therefore a quick, easy method of communication is not only nice to have but vital for a good Ofsted/ Estyn rating. School budgets being what they are, if this can be provided economicallyan additional burden can be lifted from the end-of-year balance sheet.
So what if messages could be free, unlimited and with a text capacity of up to 500 characters?! Not only that, but sent straight to the user’s phone via an app – negating the need for phone numbers completely. Simply notify parents and carers to download the Schoop app and all your messages will be sent directly to their smartphones, unlimited and at no cost!
Of course, the beauty of Schoop is that it is so much more than a messaging service. Not only can it replace your current text platform, but it can deliver true parental engagement, enhancing current programmes and reaching even those traditionally hard-to-reach parents. With an interactive calendar, forms and surveys feature, and the ability to automatically translate into over 40 languages and dialects and more, Schoop puts the whole parent body in the loop. Can you afford not to Schoop? Contact us for a free, online demo.