EPC Update: Text Message and Voice Calls Added to Individual Messages
In the early versions of Enhanced Parent Communication (EPC) we focused on announcements, or sending messages to large groups of students, families, and staff. While this covers most situations (school closure, event cancellations, etc.) there are times where it’s necessary to message only a single student or family. To better support this, we’ve extended the Email Parents/Students tool to include text messaging and voice calls for EPC customers.
A common example is communicating times for IEP meetings, which often require multiple channels (email, phone call, text message, etc). This can be time consuming clerical work for school staff. They have to manually mail letters, send emails, and call each custodial parent.
Extending SchoolInsight’s email tool to include text messages and voice calls greatly reduces this workload by making four channels available from a single screen.
This is implemented on the “Send Messages” page (previously Email Parents/Students).
Admin Main > Communications > Send Messages
Once you select a student, you can see the available communication channels for each contact. These are determined by the available data (phone numbers, email addresses) and each contact’s communication preferences.
As you add text messages and voice calls, those channels become available.
Message Logs (previously Email Logs) allow you to review the messages sent to a student and their family.
Students - Single View > Message Logs
Click “View” to see the delivery details.
To ensure parents can control how they’re contacted, we’ve added a “Message from Staff” card to the parent portal communication preferences page. Allowing parents to set their preferences reduces the likelihood they’ll otherwise block or ignore messages. When parents use their mobile device or email system to block messages from SchoolInsight, it becomes impossible for us to contact them, even in an emergency. If they use the parent portal communication preferences, those channels remain available.
We hope you like the changes. We have a few more that should be released soon. Keep an eye on the news page for more information.
The Common Goal Team