Administrative professionals working in all levels of education – from elementary through university – face the daily challenge of ensuring that they can reach a large and diverse database. Students, teachers and parents are just the beginning of a list that includes other employees, caregivers, coaches, volunteers and more. The common thread amongst this group, who spend their days in myriad ways, is that the majority use and have with them at all times a mobile device. When schools need information to get to all impacted by it, SMS is by far the best option.
By sending alerts, updates and reminders to your school community via SMS, you ensure that the message they need is immediately at their fingertips. Over 90% of SMS messages are read in the first minute. Here are 5 ways that you can utilize an SMS messaging system at your school or university.
1. Inform of weather-related campus closures
Many of us still remember those early morning phone calls made by volunteer parents in a phone chain, letting each household know about a snow day. Making sure that each student was alerted to school being closed took the organized efforts of many individuals. SMS is now the most reliable way to let everyone who might be impacted know about campus closures due to forecasted or current weather conditions. Through the integration of an SMS API, school administrators can easily and efficiently let everyone know—at the same time.
2. Send reminders about or changes to upcoming school events
Parents have busy schedules. Help them make sure they don’t miss sporting events, recitals and other extracurricular activities that their kids are taking part in. Emails are easy to miss, but an SMS before the event will get the word out to all attendees quickly and reliably.
3. Deliver emergency notifications
SMS will be read by 90% of people in the first minute that it is sent, making it an invaluable way to share emergency notifications that need to be read as soon as possible. SMS can also be used to share updates during the crisis – your entire school community will be grateful to receive updates and next steps as the crisis unfolds.
4. Complement Digital Curriculums
Online courses are now commonplace. SMS can be used to help students along as they sign up for or take part in programs and applications used as part of their education. Password resets, two-factor authentication to protect their personal accounts, technical support issues, and reminders of deadlines are just a few of the ways SMS can help.
5. Get Feedback
It can be difficult for school officials to keep up with the requests from teachers and incoming phone calls from concerned parents. Use SMS to get an idea of what your students, teachers or parents think about a change or new development. Send out a brief survey through SMS asking for their feedback, and use that information to improve your operations. An SMS poll is a great way to everyone feel like their opinions are valued.
How to Get Started
Ask your developers to check out TeleSign’s SMS API. They can efficiently test and deploy TeleSign APIs and SDKs with no contract commitments or minimum transactions. Contact us today to learn about more ways to integrate SMS or have them go ahead and sign up for a free trial.