School District Will Go Mobile

The app will be free for users to download and provided at no additional cost to the school district. In looking at innovative ways to further expand reach with parents and community members who may not have children in schools, the district negotiated the app to be included as part of the school district’s current notification system at no additional cost. Development of the app will occur over the next few months and is anticipated to be ready by the start of the school year.

In addition to grades, the app can be customized to include an array of features useful to parents such as lunch balances and overdue library books. Users can also customize the settings to download calendars for particular schools. There are also over 60-plus languages that a user may choose which instantly translates information.

The idea for the app was generated after the school district launched a five-year strategic plan this past summer. The plan, called “The Advantage,” includes numerous initiatives that drive the future direction of the school district. Initiative 3.3 calls for utilizing “all available resources to communicate with district stakeholders and the community at large.” As a result of this initiative the idea of an app was first discussed with the Board of Education in October. Since then, staff researched companies, contacted districts across the nation and involved principals to solicit their opinions about various companies as well as app features. At its April 8 school board meeting, the Board of Education approved an agreement with Parlant Technology to provide the Parent Link app as well as a home-to-school notification system at $5,000 less than the district currently pays for its existing notification system.

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