While it seems like the summer holidays have only just begun, it’s quickly creeping up to September again, and schools are starting to prepare for the new school year. No matter the size of a school, effectively communicating with staff, parents and students can be complex, especially in the midst of a global pandemic. Managing communications is a huge undertaking and it’s crucial that everyone is kept informed and connected. SMS services for schools offer a simple and effective way to communicate critical information, from pupil progress to events, school closures, and payments.
Research shows schools using SMS messages to boost student engagement saw a 7.3% increase in attendance across higher education students. Read on for our top school SMS templates.
With the Covid-19 pandemic temporarily shutting schools down and moving learning online, it’s essential schools can quickly communicate with parents and students. With one click, schools can send emergency messages and notifications to thousands of parents at once, which keeps them informed and notifies them if they need to arrange alternative childcare while also minimising the risk to staff and students. On average, SMS messages are opened within 3 minutes of receipt, so offer a far more effective way to communicate emergency messages than traditional channels like email.
Templates for emergency communications:
- We are experiencing an increase in virus cases throughout the school. If your child has any Covid-19 symptoms, please keep them off school and let us know as soon as possible. Thanks, [school name]
- SCHOOL CLOSURE. Dear [parent name], due to a Covid-19 outbreak, we are closing the school from [insert dates] and will be conducting remote learning. Please visit [insert link] for more information or reply HELP for further assistance.
Alerts and reminders
SMS is ideal for keeping parents informed and reminding them of important events such as inset days, after-school clubs, and unforeseen cancellations or closures, even at late notice. Similarly, as schools continue to operate following government guidance on Covid-19 restrictions, SMS is ideal for reminding parents of hygiene and control measures.
Templates for alerts and reminders:
- [School name] Event Reminder: Hi [parent name], our High School Transition evening is due to go ahead on [Date] from [Time]. Please reply ‘YES’ if you plan on attending.
- We’re taking every effort to protect our students and staff and it’s important we all stay safe while on-site. Please continue to encourage your children to wash their hands regularly and practice social distancing. Thanks, [school name].
Parent-teacher meetings can be stressful for everyone involved – from rushing between teachers to fitting around parent’s schedules, SMS offers a much simpler way of organising parents’ evenings, while keeping tabs on those who haven’t yet booked in and allowing parents to ask questions in advance. Setting up your parents’ evening communications ahead of time can help them to run much more smoothly.
Templates for parents’ evening:
- Hi [parent name], Mr Rose has requested an appointment time of [insert time] on [insert date] to discuss [student name]’s progress. Please reply with YES to confirm. Thanks [school name].
- Dear [parent name], to confirm you have a meeting with [teacher] on [date] at [time]. Thanks [school name].
There are plenty of things for parents and guardians to pay for, from school trips to events, lunch money to school uniforms,, some of it can get lost in the sea of admin. Similarly, as schools often have to generate their own funds, SMS services for schools offer a cost-effective way of improving donations for any fundraising activities you might be running.
Templates for payment reminders:
- Dear [parent name] your payment of [insert amount] is due by [insert date] for [insert event/trip]. Please pay here: [insert link]. Get in touch if you need more information. Thanks [school name]
- Hi [parent name], we’re fundraising for new science equipment and we’d be grateful if you could help. Follow the link [insert link] to donate. Thanks, [school name]
Attendance, progress and exam updates
Building strong engagement between the school, students and parents is the key to improving attendance and reducing unexplained absences, while alerting parents or guardians to any achievements or problems. Similarly, after a year of remote learning, frequent communications can help parents stay in the loop and feel more involved in their child’s progress. Allowing them to access progress reports and grades online can reduce unnecessary admin and help connect with disengaged parents.
Templates for attendance updates:
- Hi [parent name], we noticed that [student] was absent from school today. Please call us ASAP on [number]. As a reminder, all absences must be reported to the school office by 8:45am.
- Hi [parent name], end of term results are in for year 4. Please review them with your child and sign the report at the end: [insert link].
Email has served as a trusted and reliable channel to communicate with staff or supply teachers. However, for any time-sensitive or urgent requests, SMS is a much better option and allows for instant communication.
- Hi [teacher], a reminder that there is an inset day on [insert date] where pupils will be off. You are still required to come in for training and meetings. Thanks [school name].
Want to know more about SMS services for schools? speak to one of our experts today on +44 161 359 3100 or email [email protected]