A strong relationship with your school’s families will go far in keeping things running smoothly. Communication is the key: Parents trust their little ones with you for the day, and the more information they have about their kid’s progress and daily activities, the better. Don’t forget, for some parents, this may even be the first time they’ve trusted their child with anyone else!
The days of clipboard sign-in sheets and communication logs in cubbies are over. Hopefully your preschool has entered the modern world and is leveraging all of the great technology available. Staying informed has never been easier thanks to our devices, a fact that you as a school should take advantage of! Here are the top ways to manage parent communication in the digital age.
Some preschools put out a monthly newsletter to cover general schoolwide events and notices, while some rely on teachers to distribute a classroom-only newsletter to get out this same information, along with classroom specific news. Either way, this process can be easily managed via email by a program like Mailchimp.
You might think that because you already have a website, you don’t need a blog. Wrong! A blog can keep your families up-to-date on current events in the early childhood education space, and can give in-depth descriptions of classroom events or student experiences, giving families a deeper understanding of what goes on at preschool.
There are lots of apps out there aimed at bringing the early education business into the 21st century. Brightwheel is an easy-to-use, free mobile software app that will help you manage your school and stay in touch with families. Your staff will use brightwheel for recording and tracking daily events and activities in the classroom, and parents get real-time updates delivered to their mobile device throughout the day. This powerful app also offers secure, digital check-in/check-out, and an automated paperless billing system. Parents can invite other family to join their child’s brightwheel community, so grandma can stay updated, too. This is a great way to keep your families looped in on daily activities.
An active Facebook page or Twitter feed can give parents a real glimpse into a school’s daily activities. A bonus here is that families can also invite extended family to follow the action, too. Just be sure to have parents sign a release form, and to comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act to protect your students’ privacy.
Develop a systematic, technology-driven approach to managing parent communication, and the happier everyone will be. Parents trust you to watch after their little ones, and the more information they have on their kids’ progress, the happier they’ll be. Using technology to stay connected with parents should be a no-brainer, and it will serve as a great marketing tool to attract new families.