6 Useful Features to Look for When Choosing a School Communication App

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Are you a school principal or administrator who’s looking for an easier way to disseminate crucial information to the parents of your students? Or perhaps you’re a parent yourself, and you’re searching for a more modern solution that can help make communication with your child’s teachers a bit more efficient and hassle-free?

Whichever the case, you would be glad to know that there are already mobile apps out there that can do exactly what you want. These are called school communication apps, and they are designed to facilitate communication between parents and educators whenever needed. The fact that they’re accessible through smartphones and other mobile devices means that they’re going to be even more convenient and easy to use.

Considering that there are many school communication apps available out there, and you’rea bit spoiled for choice, you might find it difficult to pick which app to go with or to recommend to your child’s school. To help you decide, we’re providing you with a list of useful features to look for when searching for the right school and parent communication app.

A direct and instantaneous messaging feature

Your school communication app, as a bare minimum, should allow parents to instantly receive messages from your institution. This notification feature essentially delivers important news, announcements, and reminders from the school directly to parents’ phones without them having to do anything else. As such, thisminimises any chance of themmissing the announcement.

This can be incredibly useful, especially during occasions when parents need to get up-to-date information as timely as possible, such as when the school has to close due to inclement weather or other critical emergencies. Push notifications can also serve as attention-grabbing reminders for busy parents,whoneed to be reminded of school events and activities that are just around the corner.

A school event calendar feature

Another crucial feature that your school communication app should have is one that allows parents to see the school calendar and all the events lined up for the entire month or year. This feature lets parents prepare for these events in advance and avoid having to juggle their schedules at the last minute. Ideally, this feature should also allow them to directly compare the school calendar with their own digital calendar, and automatically notify them of any conflicts or clashes when it comes to dates. This cuts parents’ work in half, allowing them to set their own schedules without having to constantly switch back and forth between calendars to do manual comparisons.

An“absent today” reporting feature

When a child is sick or unable to go to school for any reason, it can be a hassle to find the time to notify the school in advance. As such, a good school communication app should have a feature that allows parents to quickly and conveniently notify the school that their child will be absent for the day. This eliminates the need for the school staff having to await phone calls from the parents to confirm their child’s absence. It also allows parents to attend to their children’s needs immediately, rather than having to step away to make calls to the school.

A school faculty or staff contact list feature

Sometimes, a parent will need to get in touch with a specific member of the school faculty directly. It can prove to be a hassle, especially during work hours, and a parent may find themselves being passed from department to department trying to find a specific teacher’s phone number. A good school communication app should be able to remedy this by having a convenient feature that lists the updated contact details of the school’s faculty and staff.

An electronic consent form or permission slip submission feature

Dealing with consent forms or permission slips can be another pain point for parents, especially those who are working or taking care of multiple children at once. They can get lost or forgotten, which can complicate matters for students about to go on field trips or other school events. A school communication app should therefore have a feature where permission slips are distributed, signed, and collected digitally within the app itself. This streamlines the entire process and minimises any chance of such important paperwork being lost or misplaced.

A digital school newsletter feature

Not every parent has the time to come over and pick up the latest school newsletter, so an ideal school communication app should also have a feature that directly links the parents to a digital version of the newsletter itself—or at least allow them to read it off their phones easily. This keeps the parents updated about school events, happenings, and current issues, which then gives them an opportunity to become more active participantsin their children’s education and life in school.

An ideal school communication app should be feature-rich and versatile

When it comes to choosing a school communication app, it’s best to go with one that has enough features to actually make communication easier for both school and parents, rather than making it even more complicated or cumbersome. As such, check for the above-listed features first before downloading the app or recommending it to your school. With these features, not only is the communication process between school and parents made easier, it is also made more convenient and effective. Indeed, it’s a net gain for everyone involved.