With summer winding down, the Blackboard Connect team is gearing up for the back-to-school season, just as our clients are. As students return to classrooms, many of educators and administrators are sending messages to parents, faculty and staff in preparation for the upcoming school year. As studies and research findings repeatedly show, the degree of parental involvement in a child’s education can dramatically affect student success and achievement. Additionally, back-to-school ‘welcome back’ messages can help district leaders share information and reminders to help ensure a smooth start on the first day of school.

Already this year, we have seen many of our K-12 clients turn to Blackboard Connect to notify parents of new state-level vaccination requirements in the wake of last year’s pertussis (whooping cough) outbreak. In addition to immunization reminders, some district leaders are taking a more proactive approach and sending personalized calls to parents of students with out-of-date medical records. Sending out personal, proactive messages before the school year even begins can help establish a positive relationship between the school or district and parents by encouraging parents to be more involved.

Throughout the year, the same approach can be used to keep parents informed of student’s progress and status in the classroom. Many school leaders use Blackboard Connect to send daily attendance notifications to parents, alerting them of a student’s unexcused absence. At Federal Way Public Schools, district leaders saw an improvement in attendance, and subsequently an increase in parental involvement, by implementing automated attendance messages using Blackboard Connect.

To learn more how you can use Blackboard Connect to send proactive messages and encourage greater parental involvement in your district, be sure to register for our upcoming webinar: Bring Your Parents Closer and Your Students Will Go Farther, on Thursday, September 1 at 1 p.m. EST. We’d love to share the best practices we’ve accumulated over 10 years of mass notification experience.

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