How do you do....it? Thread, Sending text messages home to parents in Technical; Another vote for ParentMail, it wokred out cheaper for us than any of its competitors and they do loads of ...
21st December 2010, 06:25 PM #31
Another vote for ParentMail, it wokred out cheaper for us than any of its competitors and they do loads of donkey work for us, making custom groups, unlimted traiing and support, they handle all manual data entry and updates for us, if a parent updates the profile online they email it to me to prompt us to do a data checking exercise etc and its been invaluable this last few months.
21st December 2010, 06:50 PM #32
We currently run Schoolcomms for the sending home newsletters etc via email - also have truancy call that the admin staff use - never had major problems with either (tends to be user error!) Trauncy call only problem was our internet connection was down.
My boss would like to move away though and go for Sims Intouch but i'm not sure the differences between so going to see capita at BETT
21st December 2010, 08:28 PM #33
Both my schools use ParentMail for both texting and email. We now send everything by email if we can, including newsletters and in a few months it has made an appreciable difference in paper usage.
22nd December 2010, 11:12 PM #34
- Rep Power
I've got Keep Kids Safe, bit flakey and took some time to get it going though i've got 2 SIMS servers atm!
23rd December 2010, 12:28 AM #35
A couple of months ago I looked around the major players and did cost comparisons for 'if we sent x messages per annum, it would cost y per year over the next z years etc' then trialled GroupCall, Teachers2Parents and SchoolComms. SchoolComms won hands-down for us, both on price (don't just take their website price, they have many 'current deals' which your account manager (ie whoever you get first time you ring) will magically come up with), and on functionality. The new version, which I trialled 2x beta's for, added the missing bits that I was disappointed about.
Unfortunately SLT decided against any system for now, as they want more time to discuss it, so the trial ended just before all the snow arrived!!! Grrr!
We will still be discussing it, mainly from a 'which staff are responsible for what, and do we need to pay them extra for more workload, blah blah blah' approach rather than a 'do we want it' approach. Our Sixth Form team would easily send 2,000 texts per annum through it, just for daily absences and the like. PE are interested for match cancellations/changes, Communications Manager is interested for parents evening reminders etc, then eventually I would hope to roll it out to whole-school attendance.
9th January 2011, 09:48 AM #36
- Rep Power
SIMS InTouch is expensive. There are other better and cheaper systems out there.
9th January 2011, 09:56 AM #37
- Rep Power
We decided to use ParentMail some months ago, not because they were offering a better or cheaper comms product (they're about the same as others), but because they also offer a payment service which you leave off or can add on at any time. This means we can tell parents about dinner money or trips and they can pay easily online.
Our first payment events went live last week and we're all really chuffed so far - the first parent payments are coming in and it's really easy to see what is going on.
9th January 2011, 01:20 PM #38
- Rep Power
We have SchoolBase as our MIS; they bundle texting as part of the package, so only cost is per text sent. In my research we looked at Clarion Call because of its ability to send voice messages too - might be a trick that people would want to use; we decided it was a frill and expense we could do without. We expect to use it only in emergency - but it is far cheaper than sending a letter out!
Our parents greatly appreciate emeil updates from staff about everything from sports fixtures to exams.
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