The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many schools around the world to temporarily close, which means that teachers are developing entirely new ways to educate their students. As distance learning becoming the new norm, schools are examining ways that technology can bridge the gap while students learn from home. This global change requires parents and teachers to collaborate more closely to enhance each child’s unique learning needs. Plus, students need to learn to work independently and manage their time more efficiently. With so much uncertainty around when teachers and students will return to the classroom, refining distance learning is critical to helping students advance their education.
Teachers, students and parents are a team
At its core, Skooler is designed to help support and improve how students perform in school. There are many features that tackle this goal but there are a few that are incredibly helpful during this time of increased distance learning. One of the new features that Skooler offers is the Message Tool which makes it easy for teachers, staff and parents to more easily communicate via email or SMS.
There are a variety of features that are designed to create seamless communication channels for users including:
- Choose your message delivery:
- Choose your recipient:
Choose the action you want the recipients to take such as “request read confirmation” or “request response”.
Communication 101—East Barnet School, North London, England
Once teachers, parents and students overcome the mental hurdle of adjusting to a distance learning model, new ideas and teaching methods can be incorporated into the daily teaching routine. One of the benefits of distance learning is that all three parties – teachers, students and parents – can easily communicate on an ongoing basis.
One teacher who uses Skooler, Stephen Sadler of the East Barnet School in Hertfordshire, England, found that the Assignments and Assessments feature is tremendously helpful for opening the lines of communication. You can learn more about this feature in our previous blog “All parents aboard!”
“When homework has been completed, there is a complete digital record of the transaction which lets me, the student and the parent know when an assignment has been completed,” said Sadler. “Not only are parents able to easily see how their child is doing, it creates a collaborative environment between me and the parents, and it lets the students know that I’m in close communication with their parents.”
Sadler also appreciates the Message feature, since he doesn’t like to use paper and encourages digital ink with his students. “I no longer send out physical letters to parents. They receive information via the parent portal or on the mobile app. Since I often manage multiple field trips for my students, the Message feature makes it easy for me to communicate with parents and it reduces costs since I don’t use paper. Parents welcome the Skooler Parent Portal and the Skooler mobile app, as it allows them to follow their child’s progress with assignments and assessments.”
Skooler and Microsoft Teams make quite a powerful team
Skooler is tightly integrated with Microsoft Teams which means that teachers, parents and students have access to a wide range of features that improve the learning process. Some of the benefits of the integration between Skooler and Teams include:
- Improves direct two-way communication between teachers and parents rather than relying solely on students to update their parents.
- Provides a time-dated record of when teachers communicate with parents.
- Enables easy sharing of information, feedback, messages, calendars, plans and grades with parents. In addition, what is shared with parents in Skooler automatically appears in the Parent Portal.
- Keeps assignments on track. The Assignment feature shows when tasks are created and when they are due. Parents can see the assignment details in the Parent Portal, as well as feedback that the teacher gives on the assignment.
- Gives parents a way to stay engaged in learning. The Individual Learning Plan (ILP) feature gathers all relevant information into a single report that showcases a student’s progress in each subject.
Skooler’s Parent App is available on mobile for Android and iOS phones. With the app on the phone, parents have easy access to school and student information, such as messages, weekly lessons, grades, absences, plans, tasks and assessments. They can also choose to receive push notifications when something new is added from the school, making it even easier to follow their children’s progress.
Improving communication leads to success
Communication is a core element of teaching. Teachers working with students to advance their development and parents supporting their children and taking a more active role in their education are all part of the new normal. Tapping into the power of Skooler makes it easier for teachers and parents to work together to lay the foundation for future success.