Oswego School District Implements Notification System To Alert Parents

Submitted Article

OSWEDGO, NY – While at work, has a parent thought, “Did my child get to school today?”

This school year the Oswego City School District has signed on with SchoolMessenger, a California-based company that provides notification services for parental outreach and student communications for K-12 Education.

The system is programmed to call the phone number of parents for a variety of reasons that impact the safety and academic performance of your students.

SchoolMessenger will be used to inform parents of upcoming school events such as statewide testing and parent meetings.

Technology Director Brendan Fear said, “After evaluating several notification solutions we selected SchoolMessenger because it offers a real value to the district and is proven to measurably increase parental involvement, staff communications and student attendance.”

Beginning Wednesday, Sept. 17, home and business phones throughout the district will be ringing as the new SchoolMessenger system is officially in service.

Fear said, “This is a full notification system. It will be used not only for emergency and early closings of schools, but also by food service to notify parents of balances that the students have and for attendance.“

In regards to attendance, calls will be made every morning and additionally at the high school level in the early evening making parents and guardians aware that their child isn’t in school.

Obviously, illnesses and appointments are acceptable, but this is a tool being used for the health and safety of students and to raise awareness on the homefront.

Acting Superintendent of Schools Bill Crist said, “School Messenger is just one other great communication tool that will allow the school district to immediately address parental concerns. We are hopeful that this will allow for a more open, direct line of communication between home and school.”

The program use at the elementary level addresses safety concerns.

Crist noted, “Safety, attendance and accountability are addressed between parents, students and school.”

Each day at 9:15 a.m. building attendance calls will be made for the Oswego High School and the Oswego Middle School while calls will commence at 9:45 a.m. for the five Oswego elementary schools.

Each school day at 6:30 p.m. the calls will be made once again from the Oswego High School.

Crist said, “It helps to reconnect with parents and families to make sure that the information has been conveyed and has been received. At that time typically parents and students are home together and it allows for a dialogue to take place at that point.”

This system will not replace current modes of school communication.

Principals are still accessible for live visits and we will still send home paper-based memoranda.

Acquisition of the SchoolMessenger system is intended to reinforce the district’s commitment to remain personally connected to parents.