Would you like to centralize all of your outbound communication and digital engagement into one entire platform instead of bothering parents or students with multiple other platforms? Check out 4 ways that schools are using their own custom app that your school can do as well! The possibilities are almost endless!
1. Scheduling Appointments with Custom Forms
(Edgewood High School, Edgewood City Schools, Ohio)
Some of our schools have seen that forms within their apps are a very simple way to get someone to either volunteer for something, give feedback, request a meeting, vote on a Prom King and Queen etc. You no longer have to send parents or students to your website to fill something out when instead, they can quickly do it within your own school app! One of our favorite forms that we have seen this year has been Counselor Forms that Edgewood High School created within their app (Picture Above). Students are able to select their counselor and select a reason and good time for meeting with them. The students no longer have to go to the office to fill out a form and do this, they just do it within their app in seconds! The cool thing is, 75% of their students have downloaded the app within the first hour of them announcing it! Proper implementation is very easy with our guide!
2. Using Photos to Share School Culture
(Pitner Elementary, Cobb County School District, Georgia)
Photo sharing is very important to us! Especially when it is so easy! It’s like an Instagram just for your school within your very own app! A person from your school, whether it’s a teacher, student, or parent, can upload a photo of anything going on at the school or outside of the school. Parents especially, love seeing what is going on at their child’s school when they aren’t there to see them! Above, is an example of Pitner Elementary School utilizing this section for one of their snow days. Now, anyone can send in a photo but it MUST be approved first before it goes live within the app. We require this for safety purposes in the case someone sends in a photo that is not school appropriate.
3. Simplifying Parent-Teacher Communication With Easy To Use Staff Contacts
(Butler County Middle School, Butler County School District, Kentucky)
Every school has these hidden somewhere on their website but every school we serve has these in an easy to find location on their app. A parent or student can contact a school staff member within seconds! All they do is find the person they want to contact, tap on their name, and bam! You now have the option to send them a direct email. According to our analytics, staff contact sections are one of the top 5 most used features within the app. This is simplicity at its finest making a happy parent or student. Check out the Butler County Middle School staff contact section in the photo above. The Principal even told us that a few teachers mentioned that they were now receiving so many emails. As a Principal, he was happy to hear this from the teachers because it shows him that parents are now actively showing more involvement.
4. Sending Push Notifications For Weather Updates
(Liberty Elementary, Fayette County School District, Kentucky)
Push notifications are instant messages you can send to a users phone that appear right on their phone screen. 100% of our schools utilize these in many different ways! These messages get to a person instantly and you can eliminate the need for a voicemail, email, or maybe even a monthly newsletter. Side Note: We have saved some of our schools an average of $3,700 a year from paper and ink costs alone by going paperless with their newsletters and just putting them on their app instead! Below is an example of how a few schools utilized 1 of the many push notifications they have sent out in the past. With Liberty Elementary School specifically, due to a snowy season in Kentucky, they easily informed parents of a 2-hour delay. Long gone are the days where you have to wait for a voicemail or check the local news to see if your school has a delay. Your own school app would work even better, and quicker!
Are the 4 things listed somethings that you know your school can improve on? Can you think of many other things?