Schools Call Parents for Better Results

Teleparent, the new automatic calling system, completed more than 168,000 household calls in the Long Beach Unified School District in November. After initial training and testing, the new districtwide service to schools and parents is now up and running. Both the district and the schools can use the system to notify parents.

The district attracted more than 1,200 students and their parents from all middle schools to the Seventh Grade Math Conferences — Preparing for Success in Math, High School and Beyond held on Saturday, Oct. 18. Approximately 4,700 households received Teleparent calls reminding them of the event.

For an Academic Uprise event, Nov. 21-22, the district used Teleparent to call 37,000 households of sixth through twelfth graders. More than 80 percent — approximately 30,000 — received the calls.

Avalon School used Teleparent to notify families during a recent storm. In past years, dozens of concerned parents inundated the school with calls. Some had kept their children home, thinking school was closed. This year, the automatic calls notified parents in advance that school would be in session. Attendance the next day was excellent.

One parent walking down a street in Avalon noticed passersby reaching for their cell phones as she answered hers. She also heard the phones ringing in nearby homes and businesses. In fact, hundreds of phones rang simultaneously to let parents know during the Avalon storm watch that school would be in session the next morning.

Grant Elementary School used the system to notify parents of third graders that school would start early the next day for students taking a field trip. Of the 181 notified, all but two arrived early the next day.

Teleparent allows schools to record and send messages about attendance, corrective action, grade progress, needed information and positive recognition. It can be used to notify parents and staff in emergencies, for surveys, community outreach, sports teams, school clubs, entire grade levels and special needs.